Help for a total novice gardener

Discussion in 'NEW Gardeners !' started by Tara Jane, Mar 22, 2020.

  1. Tara Jane

    Tara Jane Apprentice Gardener

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    I have inherited a lovely garden and I want to keep it nice. It’s got area that are quite old and over grow. I cleared one are last spring and planted some salvias, some are the big purple ones that die back and a couple of woody ones. Only one looks alive. Have I killed my first purchase or am I being a bit premature? Thank you in advance.
     
  2. NigelJ

    NigelJ Total Gardener

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    @Tara Jane With out knowing which Salvias the woody ones are it is hard to be definite, but I would leave until the end of May before saying it's dead. Depending on where you are and the winter you had they could be quite slow into growth and start to flower towards the end of the summer.
     
  3. Tara Jane

    Tara Jane Apprentice Gardener

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  4. Tara Jane

    Tara Jane Apprentice Gardener

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    Thank you very much. I thought I’d put the labels in a safe place...
    I’m sure the woody one was called hot lips. It looks decidedly dead. I’ll do as you say . Thanks again
    Tara
     
  5. ricky101

    ricky101 Total Gardener

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    Hi,

    Salvias not a plant we know much about, but seems HotLips is classed H5 which is gernerally quiet hardy for most of England and Wales.

    As with many such plants this time of year, a few days of sunshine and folk expect them to be in leaf or flower ! :)

    If the plant had a bad winter the top growth might die back and you will have to wait for new shoots from the base, this could be as late as May.

    What you can do now, is run your finger nail carefully over about 10 - 20mm of the main branches so the outer bark comes off, if it reveals a green stem, its alive, if its dark brown or black that part of the branch is probably dead, but it will hopefully reshoot from the base.

    Also this time of year slugs and snails are looking for a meal and any new shoot or buds are prime targets nd they can easily strip all the buds off, making you think the plant is dead.
    So protect yours with one of the many products around, we find a ring of copper tape around the base can work well.
     
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    • Tara Jane

      Tara Jane Apprentice Gardener

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      Thank you.
      That’s great. I did as you said and have green
      I will also check out the snail and slug thing. I have not seen any sign of them in my garden but my dog likes to eat them... she’s a bit gross.
      Thanks again
      Tara
       
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      • ricky101

        ricky101 Total Gardener

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        Hi,

        Generally slugs with come out at night so you or your dog, need to do the night patrols with a torch!
        Is she a French Poodle or Bullog ...:biggrin:

        Also look at the plant every day and see if you can see the new buds forming and when they just start to open, thats when the slugs will try to eat then off or as on some plants, they can be prone to birds eating them as well, no idea if Salvias are on their menu ?

        Some netting will stop the birds.

        Either way, even if they are all eaten off, a health planty will just put out another set of buds some weeks later, when many other plants will have opened up as well so diverting the robbers attention, so do not worry too much.
         
      • Tara Jane

        Tara Jane Apprentice Gardener

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        Right. I’ll keep a good eye out for the little critters!
        She’s an Australian shepherd who seems to have everything’s on the menu except what I put in front of her. mid I’m honest, she’s not a big help in the garden. More into excavation than anything useful but she is partial to a snail. I think it’s the satisfying crunch!

        thanks again
        Tara
         
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