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Sarcococca Confusa - care and fertiliser advice please

Good morning,

I am looking for guidance on the best fertiliser for Sarcococca Confusa. I have a run of 18 planted which have grown very little over the past 2 years and some are starting to yellow and lose leaves.

From reading around I understand that iron is likely the issue. Will any iron sulphate do? Additionally, what else could I try to give the plants a pick-me-up please?

I am not sure whether this will help at all, but in the same beds I have Pachysandra which are also struggling. Yes, I am the one person who cannot get Pachysandra to grow :-|

Many thanks


  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    They do like a little shade. Are they in a sunny spot? At this time of year I would not feed unless you want to give them a seaweed feed now. Is the ground around them clear of weeds and other plants? Could be that this very hot summer has not suited them at all.
    PS. I bought a Pachysandra about 10 years ago. It sulked for a good 5 years before it started to grow!
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • JMagicJMagic Posts: 16
    Thanks Hogweed. The Sarcococca rarely get direct sunshine - but it is possible that those which are struggling the most got the most of the harsh summer sun.

    Great another 3 years of looking at the miserable things! 

    I'll take a look at seaweed - thanks for the tip.
  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,369
    Do you have flowers formed on them? Ours have lots of little buds.
    We get a number of yellowed stems at times and the leaves drop off. The soil is very dry shade by a building and tree roots too and I forget to give them some tlc at times.
    Don't want you to lose your flower buds, but I tend to cut out any weak yellowed stems as they are not going to do any good and the plant will put new strong growth up, usually in the form of new shoots from underground.
    Depends where you are and if we get harsh cold weather, but they are pretty tough.
    Hogweeds seaweed would give them a good boost too.

  • JMagicJMagic Posts: 16
    Thanks Rubytoo,

    Some flower (a bit), others don't. I will up the feed and be more diligent with watering come spring. Such a pain as they are lovely plants.
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,645
    It's been a hot, dry summer.  Water them now and do it again if the ground stays dry then give them some bonemeal scatterd in around their roots as that will help with their roots, foliage and winter flowers.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,369
    The time to give these winter into spring flowering plants is the back end of summer into autumn, As Obelixx said watering is important if we don't get rain.
    Think we are so often busy, we don't get time and they get forgotten. I gave mine a good plain soak, and then a couple of weak "tomato plant" food feeds. Think that helped set buds. But only after a good plain watering first, and not on the leaves as it can scorch them.
  • I know that Sarcococca Confusa is a slowgrowing plant. I have been given a few cuttings and was wondering if they root, can I grow Sarcococca in a pot? Or do they need to be planted into the ground? It seems to be a popular plant, maybe somebody has had such experience? thank you :)
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,645
    I have on in a pot but only because I haven't yet got a bed to plant it out.  It's been in its pot a year now and is fine so it's a case of big enough pot, right compost, suitable watering and feeding and potting on when it needs more space.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,665
     Mine don't seem to flower, have 2 or 3 in different places, which are I think two different varieties which have been planted for a couple of years. I haven't fed them though so will try the tomato feed solution. 
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,369
    I think mine are ruscifolia as I found that name in an old note book of "plants I have bought or been given. No idea if the name is a synonym, they look like the others with small but broad based pointed leaves.
    We also have S. digyna with slim leaves, this suckers like mad but in a relatively polite clump. It flowers madly even though it is the one that does not get fed, or is a bit hit and miss depending on other plants getting fed as it is on the edge of the bed, it misses out but it has a bit of sun compared to the other variety in shade.  
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