In general, you can learn how to propagate phlox via division. Remember that phlox is a large group of plants, so its propagation methods will vary depending on your species. The Clemson Cooperative Extension also noted that you could propagate phlox from cuttings while others can re-seed by themself. However, this article discusses propagation from division, which is very useful for maintaining and creating copies true to the variety you have.
Propagating phlox from division is useful for mature plants when they are overcrowding the space. And compared to using seeds, you can maintain a particular characteristic of phlox in the garden by using divisions. However, you can save yourself from the potential problems when starting divisions by using the greenhouse until you can transplant established plants outdoors.
What You Need To Learn On How To Propagate Phlox Successfully
Propagating phlox from division
As mentioned earlier, propagating phlox from division is advantageous because it will not only provide you clones of your favorite species. But since phlox has multiple uses ranging from groundcover to hanging plants, you want to keep it neat as it matures. The stone that will hit these two birds is by dividing it into root cuttings.
The best time to divide phlox and take root cuttings is when the plant is just about to grow new shoots in early spring. You can dig around the plant to lift the cluster easier and sever the roots as you circle into the ground. Once you have the cluster, hose down the roots to remove the soil to make dividing easier.
You should spot the crowns at the top and use them as guides so that each section has enough roots and crowns to establish into a healthy plant. Some gardeners use their fingers to pull apart the divisions, but you can also use a knife. Make sure that you keep these divisions moist and plant as soon as possible.
When transplanting phlox, remember that they thrive well in fertile and moist soil. You can also choose somewhere bright and well-ventilated to encourage growth and avoid diseases like powdery mildew. More so, make sure that the location has good drainage and the hole is large enough to anticipate the size of the roots.
The spacing among plants can be five feet, but some gardeners allocate 10 inches depending on how you want the end positioning of plants will look. After you transplanted the plants, water them well but make sure that you don’t get the flowers and foliage wet when maintaining. A useful technique is a use of rooting fertilizer as your “water” to encourage faster establishment.
Types Of Phlox
Now that you know the best way how to propagate phlox, it’s worth learning the different types of phlox as well. This is a quick explanation of this plant’s general types, which you can use when modifying practices in the garden. However, do note that you still need to research your species to know if they have specific requirements and needs.
Annual vs perennial phlox
One of the most common types of phlox is an annual hybrid called the African Sunset Phlox. Other annuals are native to states like California, where they self-seed. Annual phlox plants usually thrive in full sun in fertile and moist soil with a pH of 4.5 to 7.0, but always check your species just to be sure of their needs.
On the contrary, perennial phlox plants usually offer various colors, not limited to shades of blue, red, white, and pink. There are also cultivars known for their fragrance, but gardeners often prefer perennial species because some are hardy and resistant to diseases like mildew. Depending on your location, you may find the appropriate perennial phlox that will thrive well in your conditions.
Creeping vs tall garden phlox
Some types of phlox that you might also encounter are the creeping and tall garden varieties. Perhaps you are already interested in the former because of the diverse colors it offers and the sweet smell it adds to the garden. More so, this groundcover plant works well in attracting pollinators.
On the other hand, the tall garden phlox is also colorful and fragrant. What’s fantastic with this phlox is that there are hybrids with contrasting colors for a unique addition to the garden. Because of their height, they make lovely additions in empty spaces.
It’s not easy to discover a species that offer different types ranging from tall flowers to groundcovers that also come in various colors. Therefore, knowing how to propagate phlox will always be a useful skill that you can use to maintain and create clones of your favorite varieties. The best way to propagate phlox is by division, and the process itself is straightforward.
You’ll just dig up the plant in early spring and hose down the roots to remove the soil. Make sure each section has enough crowns and roots to thrive and pull them apart. Then, plant these divisions in a fertile, moist, and well-draining location.
Overall, the emphasis is necessary on researching the phlox species you’re growing. Remember that there are many varieties and hybrids, so their growing requirements might vary. Nonetheless, this colorful and fragrant plant should be a stress-free addition to the garden.