Thursday, May 28, 2009

Delosperma ‘Stardust’

I didn’t plant any petunias this spring.  I can’t stand the amount of maintenance they require! 

When you deadhead petunias, they leave behind a sticky substance on your fingers.  I inevitably wipe it on my pants.  Did I mention I do most of my quick plant maintenance right before I leave for work in the morning?

Along the lines of deadheading, petunias require so much pinching – DAILY – in order to get a bushy flowering plant.  If you don’t pinch, you end up with stringy vines with sparse flowers – very unattractive. 

It was a little bit of a bummer having to wait a bit longer to plant my annuals, but it was worth it to avoid the summer long aggravation. 

In order to remedy this problem for next year I’ve decided to plant Stardust Ice Plant.  It blooms early and requires almost no maintenance.  I don’t even have to plant it each year – it’s a perennial!

I now present, Delosperma ‘Stardust’

Category Perennial
Common Name
  • Ice Plant
  • Delosperma
Formal Name Delosperma floribunda ‘Stardust’
Description A really cute plant with 2” purple blooms with white centers growing on dark green, succulent foliage.  This drought tolerant ground cover is great for those dry areas of your landscaping.  A hardy plant with blooms from spring to frost make this a beautiful addition.

 

 

Uses
  • Landscaping
  • Groundcover
  • Containers (it’s a spiller)
  • Rock Gardens
Light Requirements

Full Sun

Soil Requirements Tolerates almost all types of soil.  Sandy, clay, loamy – it doesn’t care!
Water Requirements From dry to moist & well-drained.
Height About 6”
Spread About 12”
Growing Zone 5 – 8
Manicuring or Pruning Cut back the dead stuff from the prior year in the spring.  Otherwise, leave it alone.
Fertilization Early spring, then again in mid summer
Growth Cycle Spring to frost.  Semi-evergreen in very mild climates.  Perennial that remains healthy with occasional division.
Bloom Time Early spring thru frost
Bloom Color Purple with white centers
Propagation
  • Seeds
  • Cuttings
  • Division (early spring every 2 - 3 years)
Maintenance Level Low maintenance.  Baby it in the first year by making sure it has a good amount of water and fertilizer in order to get it well established.  Subsequent years require almost no maintenance.  That’s my kind of plant!
Special Features
  • Pest Resistant
  • Disease Resistant
  • Drought & Heat Tolerant
  • Attracts Butterflies 
Known Issues Unknown
Planting Instructions Surface sow seeds in moist soil.  Germination will occur after about two weeks as long as the temperature remains above 65 degrees.  Can be transplanted to 3” pots until they are ready to be planted directly in the ground.  Plant 12” to 15” apart.

9 comments:

chicamom85 said...

I don't plant petunias either. For some reason, mine get eaten by bunny rabbits. I call petunias "bunny food" and gave up on them a few years ago. The other flower pictured is beautiful.

Anne

SquirrelQueen said...

I planted petunias in a couple of hanging baskets but you are so right, they are a pain.
That is a beautiful little flower, I will look for it when I go shopping tomorrow.
Thanks for the tip.
SQ

mkreider said...

I really like Stardust as you present it and will look for it this weekend!

The Laughing Idiot said...

I've got the bug to dig in the dirt too! I was going to plant these around my liriope. I think they will complement each other - especially when the flower stems pop up on the liriope.

SquirrelQueen said...

Just wondering if you had a list of flowering plants to attract butterfies and bees? I could take time and do a search but thought you might already have one.
Thanks
Hope you are having a really great weekend,
SQ

The Laughing Idiot said...

SQ - I do not have a handy list, but if you visit the Missouri Botanical Garden via "The Kemper Center" link below, their search has an option for "Attracts Butterflies". The list you get is pretty extensive.

I'm pretty sure anything that attracts butterflies will also attract bees. I have never found a butterfly attracting plant that at some point mentioned that it also attracted bees. I guess most people aren't looking for bees so it's not one of the options on the Kemper site.

Almost everything in my front garden is supposed to attract butterflies: butterfly bush, lilac, balloon flowers, roses, daylilies, crape myrtle, even the cherry tree.

Lynn said...

Love this flower. Never planted petunias but after reading this, I probably never will. I anything that is low maintenance.

Thanks for joining in the Black & White Challenge.

SquirrelQueen said...

Thanks LI, I will check it out. My butterfly bush did not survive the winter so I will replace it soon.
I just planted a cranesbill and the bees seem to like it a lot. They have really enjoyed the raspberry bushes but the flowers there are almost gone.
Thanks,
SQ

The Laughing Idiot said...

If you are replacing your Butterfly Bush, take a look at the Rainbow Butterfly Bush. Beautiful orangy & lavender flowers on one stem. Wish I had it.