Forget-me-not is associated as a sign of never-ending love in the language of flowers. This powder blue flower has five petals that marry a yellow centre.
These flowers bloom in spring and are only one centimetre in diameter, making them one of the tiniest flowers. Forget-Me-Nots are extremely popular in-home gardens as they add a charming touch to the overall beauty.
Flower lobes also come in pink, white, and yellow centres, but the powder blue ones are recognized as the most common variation. They also qualify as an excellent indoor container plant.
After growing forget-me-nots, their care routine is the next crucial part. In this article, we will explore the caring instructions of this tiny plant to help you maintain their foliage clusters throughout summer and spring.
- 1 Soil Requirements
- 2 Forget-me-not flowers Care Guide
- 3 Pruning and Deadheading
- 4 Pest Control
- 5 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- 6 Conclusion
Understanding the soil conditions required by these dainty flowers is a primary step when it comes to their care. Forget-me-nots love a soil that is both, moist and fertile.
You must never allow the soil to drain and get dry as this will deprive the flower growth of essential nutrients.
Plant them in a soil that has plenty of organic matter and has a pH that falls between 5.5 and 7. Prepare the soil by mixing in compost, cow manure, or peat moss before placing the flower seeds for growing.
Please note that the healthiest plants will come from seeds that are planted in well-worked soil. And not to forget that the soil must contain plenty of compost and has a great drainage quality.
Forget-me-not flowers Care Guide
Forget-me-not needs well-drained soil with a semi-shaded location. Therefore, when it comes to picking a location, prioritize one that has partial shade.
If not, then be sure it is protected against the hottest rays when the sun is at its peak. Direct sunlight will damage these delicate blue flowers instantly, wilting their growth.
If you live in a region, that experiences hot summers, plant forget-me-not where it only gets direct sunlight during early morning hours, and shade for the rest of the day.
This location allows for the much-needed shade while allowing moisture retention, promoting optimal growth of this wildflower.
Even if you have an area of the shady pond, forget-me-nots will love to grow there as well. You can also try planting the seeds indoors three weeks before the last expected frost.
It is important to fertilize forget-me-nots at least once a year using a slow-release nitrogen fertilizer.
You can use 2-3 pounds approximately for every 100 square feet. Sprinkle the fertilizer over the soil and then water after a while.
Watering will allow the essential nutrients to dissolve and penetrate across the plantation. Read the package instructions carefully before fertilizing the soil.
You can use 10-5-5 fertilizer on every 50 square feet and a 10-10-10 fertilizer on every 100 square feet.
The forget-me-not plantation needs deep watering as soon as 3 inches of soil feels dry. Do not allow the plants to stand in water as this will cause the soil to get very damp.
Water the forget-me-nots often enough that the soil stays moist but not extensively soggy. During winters, water them only slightly.
As soon as winters hit, alter your watering routine to only twice a month, while the plants are observed to be dormant.
In spring, you can resume your normal watering schedule. You can water using a drip irrigation system or a hose as this will ease out the watering process for you.
Pruning and Deadheading
Forget-me-nots tend to produce more flowers over a long growing season if you practice light pruning and deadheading.
- Snip off spent blossoms using scissors. This will encourage the plant to bloom more while discouraging reseeding and spreading. Make sure to cut flower stems back to the branch they are growing in. You can rub your scissors with alcohol before and after the trimming procedure to avoid the spread of any diseases.
- Cutting entire branches, including the flowers, will give you cut flowers for indoor use.
- Make sure to prune each bush while shaping it neatly. This will help keep the form tidy and complete. Gardeners often prefer forming the forget-me-not plant into a spherical shape like a globe. It helps in the production of more flowering tips while giving the flowers a more attractive look.
- During late fall or early winter, you must cut the plant back to the ground. The occasional perennial nature of this plant will send up new growth from the root system.
- It is important to remove wilted flowers on a regular basis. This practice is referred to as deadheading in gardening terms. Flowers are observed to last only a few days; therefore, deadheading the forget-me-not plant twice a week is a best-suited practice.
- As soon as all the flowers and leaves wilt away, you can focus on removing the airborne portions of the plant. These parts of the plant look ungainly with their dead outlook. A timely removal will allow space for new and more fresh-looking flowers. They lend your garden, a beautiful hint of blue surprise.
A fresh arrangement of forget-me-nots is an eye-pleasing sight. But to get this picture-perfect plantation, it requires a sound understanding of the common problems that prevail in forget-me-nots. From pest attacks to fungal diseases, these delicate flowers are susceptible to several problems. Once they are established in the landscape, forget-me-nots tend to develop a tough outlook, but this does not guarantee it to be a problem-free plant. However, luckily, most pests and diseases found in them are easily controllable
Here we have compiled a list of common forget-me-not pests and diseases for you to keep an eye out for.
Aphids are tiny, soft-bodied insects like bugs that find their way easily to a garden. If not controlled on time, these sapsuckers multiply quickly and cause a serious problem for forget-me-nots.
Therefore, the sooner you catch them, the better. Inspect your plantation on a regular basis to check for these tiny potato-like bugs. Be sure to watch out for ants that farm on aphids, as they tend to re-establish their colony very quickly.
The presence of aphids in plants is a clear indication of distorted flower formation. It also results in virus transmission from plant to plant. Aphids can be controlled using cold water sprays.
You can also make a mixture o cayenne pepper and soap and spray it over the infected plants. A regular spray of pepper or soapy water or can control aphids adequately. You can also remove them by hand.
Crown rot falls under the same category of nasty plant diseases such as root rot that affect plant growth adversely—caused by a fungus, this garden malady developed in soil over time with heavy rainfalls and flash floods. Among other reasons for formation is a lot of water standing at one location.
This disease is comparatively difficult to notice, and once it does the damage, the plant cannot be brought back to life by any means. Therefore, the only solution is to diagnose it at its early stage and prevent the spread.
If you notice wilting on your plants with cobweb threads at the base, then it is a clear sign of a crown rot attack.
This fundal pathogen eats away any forget-me-not it comes across with. As the disease continues to spread, the plant will die. Eventually, the leaves will turn yellow, purple, or even read at times. The plant growth will also become stunted.
As soon as you catch the first signs of crown rot, prepare yourself up to take immediate action for pest control. First things first, identify all infected parts of the plantation and pull them out.
And later discard them to prevent the outbreak from affecting other parts of the garden.
To control the spread, you should also clean the tools so that spores that lead to crown rot development don’t spread.
Be sure to sanitize the area and amend the soil in the infected area so that the crown rot does not develop again.
Replace the infected soil or destroy it immediately. To amend the soil, work in a generous amount of rich soil so that it helps even out the clay proportion of the soil.
Powdery Mildew is identified as a fungal disease, making it a serious threat to the wellbeing of forget-me-nots. It affects all parts of the flower plantation without any discrimination.
This fungus is favoured by high humidity conditions that produce dry leaves. Initially, a white powdery layer settles in on the foliage, and this is the very first alarming sign that your plants are now being infected with this fungal disease.
A major part of the fungus persistently settles on the outer parts of the plant. And it eventually sinks down to the root system, competing with the plant cells for essential nutrients.
This clearly explains the undernourished, wilted flower production.
Powdery Mildew can be controlled by removing infected plants.
You must later dispose of off all the infected plants carefully so that other parts of the garden do not get infected. This measure helps the other plantation to grow in a nourished condition.
Spraying the infected plants with organic fungicides is also recommended for faster recovery. You must also space the plants at a good distance as this will allow for healthy air circulation.
Try your best to avoid overhead watering procedures if your plants have powdery Mildew.
Aster yellow is a systematic chronic disease spread by leafhoppers. Leafhoppers spread phytoplasma over the plants as they feed on them one by one.
Infect forget-me-nots then turn yellow and wilt, sporting a stunted growth. The spread of aster yellow accelerates when the weather is cool and eventually gets worse in wet summers.
To control the spread of this incurable disease, remove the infected parts of the plant immediately.
A wise and early diagnosis with prompt action is recommended to prevent aster yellow from affecting the entire garden.
Although the disease itself is not considered fatal for the entire plantation, but any prevailing signs make it impossible for the forget-me-nots to produce healthy flowers.
Since leafhoppers are known to hide in weeds, weeding the surrounding area is also recommended to prevent any potential aster yellow attacks in the future.
Other Pests and Diseases
Apart from the aforementioned pest attacks and fungal diseases, there are several others. From potato flea beetles to tiny black beetles and downy Mildew, there are several other pests that attack forget-me-nots.
They feed on the lower part of the leaves, leaving tiny pocket holes across the leaf structure. Over time, the foliage transitions into a discoloured array of shades until it finally dies.
These pests don’t always cause serious damage to forget-me-nots, but if not dealt with on time, they tend to spread fast. Try to protect young forget-me-nots with row covers until they mature.
Snails and slugs are also readily found near forget-me-nots. They are recognized as mollusks and not insects. In soil with snails and slugs, you’ll observe chewed plantation with tiny holes.
To remove these creatures, you can go for the manual approach and handpick them during the daylight. This way, it will be easier to locate them. Ladybugs and lacewings are also used to provide control over molluscs and insects eating on the forget-me-not foliage.
At all times, carefully inspect your forget-me-not for signs of rust diseases. You will often come across oddly coloured leaves in shades of orange and brown with rust spots.
With mild cases, pull out the infected leaves and instantly discard them. You must remove all infected parts of the plant from the soil so that it won’t infect new plants as flowers produce in the next spring.
For healthy growth of forget-me-nots, it is important that you keep yourself informed about pest control when growing them. To read more about the common problems that prevail when growing forget-me-not and their solution, check out Tele Flora.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How often should I fertilize my soil when it is planted with forget-me-not seeds?
The fertilization routine for forget-me-nots significantly depends on the nutrient in your soil. Generally, forget-me-nots require fertilization at least twice a year.
Once in spring, when they are planted and then in the fall. Most gardeners describe early fall as the ideal time for the second cycle of fertilization.
This allows the soil to boost towards the end of the season while preparing the plants to grow strong in the next spring as well. You can also spread a 2- to 3-inch layer of organic mulch over the soil to help keep it moist. Water the plants when the top of the soil begins to dry.
Can forget-me-nots be used as complementary planting?
Forget-me-not is classified as a low growing ground cover. With a six to eight-inch size, they tend to spread widely, thus making it a good complementary plant.
For a garden with tall woodlands and sun perennials like ferns and irises, forget-me-nots make a great companion.
They not only facilitate in softening the base of these plants but also elevate the overall look with their beautiful, eye-pleasing colour.
Are forget-me-nots easy to grow?
When it comes to growing forget-me-nots, it is relatively easy. They are mostly grown as an annual by starting seeds in pots indoors. As long as you provide a nutrient-dense soil that is organically rich in all essential elements the plant needs for growth it will grow easily without causing trouble.
You must also take care of the watering routine and provide a shaded area for better growth. However, if they are out of their comfort zone, then they may cause some fuss during the growing period.
Why are my forget-me-nots not blooming?
If your forget-me-nots are not blooming, then there are three primary reasons contributing to the cause,
i). too much sunlight – as mentioned earlier, forget-me-nots grow in partially shaded areas, exposure to excessive sunlight translates directly into limited success with flowers. Instead of producing flowers, the plants will end up burning or wilting under the hot sun.
ii). improper fertilization – the soil needs to be fertilized to work in the essential nutrients. But too much of something can make things worse. Similarly, if you overwork fertilizers in the soil then forget-me-nots won’t bloom. So carefully schedule your fertilization routine to twice a year.
iii). dry soil – forget-me-not loves bog; thus, super moist soil is what we are looking for. Make sure to keep the moisture levels up by watering during hot, humid conditions when there is not enough rain. Dry soil will majorly contribute to a plan that does not five flowers.
When it comes to naming a class woodland garden plant, forget-me-not takes the crown. This charming plant aesthetically forms a carpet in the garden with its blue arrangement of flowers.
With minimal effort, you get a delicate bed of blooming flowers in the garden, that complement all types of flowers and foliage.
Forget-me-nots are known to be a memorable, iconic plant, sticking on your clothes, signaling you to not forget them anywhere you go.
With a low-maintenance quality and easy care, these powder flowers also come in white and pink colours, making them a perfect pick for any garden.