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Old May 20th, 2011, 04:56 PM
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Thumbs down How long for bee balm, etc. to recover from a mowing?

'Newly retired' hubby almost just became 'recently deceased newly retired' hubby.

We have a problem with daisies. The last people here let them get out of control and they're extremely invasive. Every spring I go out into the gardens and dig out the daisies, but the ones in the lawn we control just by mowing. Today I showed hubby some patches of daisies in the lawn that needed to be mowed and set him to work.

Being a helpful sort, after he was done with the lawn he decided to help out in the garden. He mowed my well garden cuz he saw daisies in it. So now I can't dig out the daisies because I can't see what is daisy and what used to be my pretty plants.

He mowed down my bee balm, the hoary vervain, and the whorled milkweed. The bee balm has bloomed in the past, but this would have been the third (and first blooming) year for the vervain and the milkweed.

So my question is, does anyone know if bee balm, hoary vervain, and whorled milkweed will come back after being mowed down? If they do, will I have to wait another 3 years to see blooms?
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Old May 20th, 2011, 05:40 PM
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He did what ? Got an extra cot you can set up in the kennel ?



I bet he felt real bad about it, poor guy, so 1 week banishment ought to be enough .

Wish I could answer your questions but, I only have experience with regular milkweed and it did bloom again mid to late summer after I took the weed whacker to it (accidentally of course ).
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Old May 20th, 2011, 06:19 PM
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I tried to find some info and apparently Bee Balm can be pruned to about 2 inches from the ground. This is best done in late fall after the first hard frost, so your very helpful hubby was either very late or very early depending on how you look at it.

Haven't found any info on the others.
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Old May 20th, 2011, 06:45 PM
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I believe they will all come back normally by next year as they all have fairly strong root reserves. If not, hubby's next chore should be a trip to a greenhouse. However, I would not encourage multiple mowings (i.e., store the mower in a locked shed from now on).
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Old May 20th, 2011, 07:26 PM
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I'm going to institute a punch card system--he has to punch in with me before he mows anywhere near the gardens or I'm gonna punch him out Thank dawg he only managed one swath and was using the push mower, not the tractor!



2 inches, eh? Hmmm...the biggest stem I could find was down to about an inch. Oooops.

The vervain is a prairie plant, and so should be fairly resistant to hervivores grazing it down, don't you think? The milkweed was just a wee little thing last year, so I'm not sure if it's gonna make it.

SIA, I'm hoping the bee balm's roots were pretty strong--this was it's 4th year--but the other two were just planted last year as second year plants. Not sure if their roots had a chance to get very strong. The plants were both a bit stunted from transplant shock but I had high hopes for them this summer
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Old May 20th, 2011, 09:14 PM
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That must have been so disappointing, but to look on the good side, he owes you now. LOL. Fingers crossed that it's all okay.
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Old May 20th, 2011, 10:19 PM
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Sigh....yeah, he'll probably buy me a new camo t-shirt or baseball cap. He's such a romantic.
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Old May 21st, 2011, 04:21 PM
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Hazel,I cut my Bee-Balm right down to the ground in the fall, so I am sure it will be ok.
Know nothing of Milkweed or the other thing you mentioned.
I would love some Milkweed for the Butterflies though.
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Old May 21st, 2011, 04:34 PM
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*sigh* I'd love some milkweed for the butterflies, too, chico. Not sure it's gonna happen this summer, though.

Of the three, I'm fondest of the Bee Balm, and it sounds like a lot of people cut it way back, so I'm hoping it will be okay
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Old May 21st, 2011, 08:47 PM
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I'm liking your punch card system Hazel!

I would think that the balm will come back as long as Newly retired hubby doesn't disturb it or the milkweed any further. It would of been a different story if he was rototilling the area instead!

Good luck!
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Old May 28th, 2011, 10:32 PM
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We need a punch card system for the weed whacker now, too.

Anyone want to venture a guess on how long it will take a wild geranium to recover from being torn to shreds just before blooming by a weed whacker?

I'll have to remember to tell him right before things are ready to bloom so he doesn't miss mowing anything down.
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Old May 28th, 2011, 10:37 PM
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Hazel it will grow back for sure! Mine I have to throw them out they multiply in places I dont want them..
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Old May 29th, 2011, 08:33 AM
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I hope so. Nothing is surviving to bloom this year.
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