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Have I killed it or can I save it?

JacquimcmahonJacquimcmahon Paris FrancePosts: 726
so my recently purchased delphinium I’d definitely not happy. It’s been crazy hot and it was frizzled with the heat and sun, so I moved it and watered very well.... now it looks like this. :'( so what can I do to make it and me smile again?


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,857
    I would be inclined to cut the flowers and put in a vase, and then cut all the stems down to 15cm or so. It should then resprout from the bottom.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • JacquimcmahonJacquimcmahon Paris FrancePosts: 726
    Thanks fidgetbones I was wondering if it would benefit from a haircut. Generally will a delphinium re flower in the same year or am I just prepping it for next year if I chop it down. Also would it be better kept in shade once I’ve cut it?
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,857
    It will cope with normal full sun, just possibly not what we had yesterday.  It will also probably flower again if you water it with a dilute feed such as phostrogen.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,878
    edited June 2019
    You would get far more out of a delphinium if you planted it in the garden. 
    The season is almost over now for them, I don’t think feeding a stressed plant is a good idea, just keep it watered, but plant out if you can. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • JennyJJennyJ DoncasterPosts: 6,079
    It'll probably be happier when you've got it planted into the ground. They are big hungry thirsty plants and it will want to get it's roots down into the soil.
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,878
    @JennyJ snap😀
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,135
    I think Jacqui has a terrace, so no ground to plant in. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • JacquimcmahonJacquimcmahon Paris FrancePosts: 726
    Yup, terrace here. It was marked as being suitable for large pots..... to be honest it’s pretty much the first time I’ve seen them in a garden center here, and never seen them in gardens here either, so no surprise if the info on the pot was wrong. 

    It it was really pot bound so I planted into a pot two or three sizes up. I could go bigger if that would be better.
  • DaveGreigDaveGreig West Fife, ScotlandPosts: 49
    Some garden centres don’t half give some ropey advice.

    Delphiniums are beautiful and hard to beat in season and in the right context. That context however is a perennial border where it does its business then dies back, bulking up for next year. Surrounding planting then takes over and fills the gap. Yes it will flower again if cut back and fed but will do better if the spikes are cut off and it’s allowed to die back naturally. It then benefits from a top dressing with leaf mould and the following spring given a mulch of well rotted manure with blood fish and bone being added shortly after as the soil heats up. 

    If you have the room, time and motivation this is all fine but what this tells you is that pots are far from an ideal environment. Neither is limited space and in that context delphs are not a value for money plant. You get 3-4 weeks tops of flowering then your left with a long period of re-generation and die back with a bare pot to look at. Ideally if your gardening in pots you should look for more consistent flowering plants that provide colour and interest over a longer period.

    If on the other hand you just really like delphs and want to grow them regardless and I don't blame you if you do, then keep them fed, watered, cut back after flowering and you may get some succession. Just be prepared to put up with long periods of sad curled up yellowing leaves and the aforementioned bare pots.

    PS. Don’t let them become pot bound because they won’t like it. Good luck. 👍👍
  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 19,878
    I entirely agree Dave, the GC should state it needs to be planted out and it’s not a pot plant.
    I suppose they just p assume everyone will take them home for the garden. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

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