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Gardening With Herbaceous Plants My thanks to Jim Harbage at South Dakota State for his presentation-January 2001 Herbaceous Gardens Steps in developing a garden Site analysis and modification Site plan Establishment Maintenance Overwintering Gardening with Herbaceous Plants

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gardening with herbaceous plants

Gardening WithHerbaceous Plants

My thanks to Jim Harbage at South Dakota State for his presentation-January 2001

herbaceous gardens
Herbaceous Gardens
  • Steps in developing a garden
    • Site analysis and modification
    • Site plan
    • Establishment
    • Maintenance
    • Overwintering
gardening with herbaceous plants3
Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Site analysis:
    • Light:
      • Hours of full sunlight
    • Soil:
      • Texture
      • pH
      • Fertility
    • Moisture:
      • Natural or applied
    • Temperature:
      • Heat reflection or exposure
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Light:
    • More than six hours of full sun = Full sun
    • Three to six hours of full sun = Partial shade
    • Zero to three hours of full sun = Shade
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Soil:
    • Texture - drainage
    • pH - acid or alkaline
    • Fertility - organic material
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Moisture:
    • Natural precipitation
    • Irrigation
    • Drainage
  • Note:
    • Many perennials planted in heavy wet soil (clay) will fail to survive.
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Site modification:
    • Soil amendments
    • Addition of pathways, walls, ponds, etc.
    • Changing slope or grade
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Site Plan:
    • Design
    • Choose materials
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Design:
    • Proportion
    • Balance
    • Pattern
    • Focus
    • Flow
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Selecting plants-Plant names:
    • Common names:
      • Descriptive (sometimes)
      • Confusing (usually)
    • Latin/Scientific names:
      • Specific
      • Descriptive
    • Oh no! Not the dreaded latin name.
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Choose materials for:
    • Match to site conditions and hardiness
    • Flower - size, shape, color
    • Bloom period - duration and time
    • Plant size - height and spread
    • Foliage - texture and color
    • Ease of maintenance
    • Cost
the garden plan
A. Buddleia-Butterfly bush (2)

B. Coreopsis (12)

C. Scabiosa (10+10)

D. Verbena (3)

E. Lantana (2 in each pot)

F. Columbine (5+5)

G. Daylily (8+8)

H. Hardy Hibiscus (3)

I. Liatris (8)

J. Lobelia (9)

K. Honeysuckle (2)

L. Perennial Salvia (3+3)

The Garden Plan
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Once you have a site plan you are ready to go get your plants and start planting
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Obtaining plants:
    • Propagate your own
    • Trade with friends
    • Mail order
      • Bare root versus greenhouse grown
    • Local garden center
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Planting/Transplanting
    • In the Spring - most plants
      • Plant actively growing plants after the last frost
      • Plant dormant plants - 3 to 4 weeks earlier
    • In the Fall - Iris, Peony, Poppy…
      • Plant at least six weeks before ground freezes
      • Iris and poppy - transplant late July early August
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Planting:
    • Group plants
    • Plant at same depth as container
    • Plant crown just below soil line
      • Peony - rhizomes not more than two inches below surface
    • Water in
    • Fertilize: easy does it! (balanced fertilizer or 5-10-5 five pounds per 100 square feet)
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Care and Maintenance:
    • Watering
    • Pest control
    • Weed control
    • Pinching and deadheading
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Watering:
    • In general - 1 inch to 1.5 inches per week (more when flowering or in sandy soil)
    • Water deeply and infrequently
    • Apply in the morning
    • Avoid wetting the foliage
    • Small newly planted materials need frequent watering since roots are near the surface
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Pest control:
    • Prevention - healthy, stress free plants are more resistant
      • Good drainage
      • Space plants for air flow
    • Rarely use chemicals
    • May need to remove some plants
    • Wash off many insects with water
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Weed Control:
    • Start before planting - Fall is best
      • Non-specific, systemic herbicide (e.g. Roundup)
    • Can use after planting with care
      • Early Spring before desired plants break dormancy (emerge from the soil)
    • Cultivation after planting
      • After plants can be seen
      • Shallow to avoid root damage
    • Mulching
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Pinching and Deadheading
    • Maintain bushy plants
    • Avoid reseeding
    • Increase flowers
    • Increase bloom season
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Preparation for Winter
    • Leave dead stems/foliage
    • Mulch - two weeks after first frost
      • Pine straw
      • Other materials
    • Remove before active growth in the Spring
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • Winter Hardiness:
    • Consider hardiness zone ratings
    • Stress reduces hardiness:
      • Too much/too little water
      • Too little light
      • Competition
      • Low fertility
      • Late nitrogen application (a real no-no)
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Gardening with Herbaceous Plants
  • In Summary:
    • Select good plants
    • Plant correctly
    • Don’t over fertilize
    • Don’t over water
    • Good pest control
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