March 5, 2011
March 7, 2011
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I am trying to identify a box-like black bug, with orange markings. The bug seems to stay on the ground and breed heartily among the roots. Often, smaller bugs can be seen carrying each other. The bug is beetle like, flat and about the size of a small peanut. The bug has destroyed ancient alyssum banks. The foliage begins to take on a whitish appearance. I don’t think the bug feeds on foliage, it just cuts off the water supply to the plant at the root. The bug is not a fussy eater.
I have purchased the following potted plants:
Never having planted anything before, I have no idea how deep they should be planted. HELP!!
These articles should help: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/alyssum/growing-sweet-alyssum.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/lobelia/lobelia.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/dianthus/growing-dianthus-plants.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/begonia/annual-begonia-care.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/columbine/columbines.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/petunia/petunia-care.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/vines/mandevilla/mandevilla-plant.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/bulbs/calla-lily/growing-calla-lilies-and-care-of-calla-lilies.htm, https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/flowers/fuchsia/growing-fuchsia-flower.htm
There are many places you can acquire alyssum seeds from. If you google "alyssum seeds" you will find many on-line suppliers of these seeds. You can also visit your local mom and pop and big box garden centers to make an inquiry about these seeds. If you still strike out, you can also google "seed swaps" or "seed exchanges" on-line to connect to someone to swap seed with. I hope that helps.
Alyssum is hardy down to zone 8, so you should have no issues in growing this sweet flower now.
If you experience temperatures below normal for your area, you may want to cover them.
Yes, there are different varieties of alyssum, and some have a tendency to grow taller than others. This site has a good overview of different varieties:
There are also closely related species in the Alyssum genus, but these are less commonly grown in gardens.
I have an Alyssum border from a couple of years back. It’s not in bloom yet. If I just trim it back with scissors, will it bloom again? I don’t want to destroy the plants. I’m in the San Francisco Bay area – very mild climate and the frost is probably over now.
You can trim the damaged or dead parts of the plant but do not prune until after it's first bloom.
After blooming you can trim the plants back to half the height.