Tips For Producing Stokesia
This advice on producing stokesia comes from Emerald Coast Growers.
September 5, 2012
Stokesia laevis ‘Divinity’ PPAF from Emerald Coast Growers represents a leap forward for this stalwart perennial. Blooming begins in June and can linger into September. The beautiful feathery flowers open with subtle yellow centers, soon mellowing to a pure, celestial white that’s just as heavenly as its namesake, a sugary Southern confection.
At retail, 1-gallon pots of S. ‘Divinity’ offer numerous talking/selling points:
• Hardy in USDA Zones 5 to 9
• Native to southeast North America
• Heat and humidity tolerant
• Attracts butterflies to the garden
• An attractive cut flower with good vase life. Bring the beauty indoors!
In the garden, ‘Divinity’ stands 12 to 14 inches tall and spreads to about 18 inches wide in a season. It’s versatile in:
• Front or middle of traditional borders
• Cutting gardens
• Native or naturalized meadows
• Medium to large containers
Wide, strap-like leaves form neat, rich green mounds, evergreen in mild winters. Dead-headed or lightly sheared, ‘Divinity’ will rebloom for a second show. It’s a forgiving, low-maintenance perennial that likes a little afternoon shade in hot climates, light winter mulch in cold regions and well-drained soils.
Optimal growing temperatures include daytime temps of 75°F to 90°F. Like the species, ‘Divinity’ is tolerant of a wide range of conditions including high heat and humidity. Nighttime temperatures of approximately 45°F to 55°F will help maintain active growth.
Plant one liner per trade gallon using a media with good drainage. Finish time for gallons is approximately eight to 10 weeks.
pH And Electrical Conductivity (EC)
Maintain pH at 5.5 to 6.2, and keep EC at 0.75 to 1.25 mS/cm using the 2:1
‘Divinity’ enjoys high light. Provide full sun or a minimum of 5,000 foot candles.
Pinching and Plant Growth Regulators
No pinching is necessary. Regarding plant growth regulators, a 2000 ppm B-Nine/1000 ppm Cycocel spray is effective.
Apply a well-balanced fertilizer such as 150-200 ppm liquid feed or 0.75 to 1 pound nitrogen per yard of slow release.
‘Divinity’ has average moisture needs. Keep soil evenly moist, avoiding excessively dry or wet media.
Pests and Diseases
‘Divinity’ is not at particular risk for any pests. Avoid excess water on the leaves to prevent leaf spotting.
These tips came from Josiah Raymer, head grower and general manager for Emerald Coast Growers. For more information and availability on Stokesia laevis ‘Divinity’ or any of Emerald Coast Growers’ perennial starter plants, specialty plants or ornamental grass liners, call 877-804-7277, eMail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit ECGrowers.com.