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Planting Instructions for Dictamnus (gas plant):

Bloom Time:  Early summer Light:  Full sun to light shade
Soil:  Any average to rich, well-drained Moisture:  Average, drought tolerant once established, avoid soggy/wet areas
Planting Depth:  1/2" deep to the top of the dormant sprouts, mulch lightly after planting Spacing:  24 to 36" apart, though it will take several growing seasons to fill up that space

Upon arrival:  Unpack box and check that you have everything on your packing list. Plant everything within a few days.

Soil/Location:  Plant your Dictamnus in sun to light shade in average to rich, well-drained soil. Add compost or peat humus to enrich and loosen the soil if needed, though avoid soils that stay too wet and soggy, especially avoiding areas that are extremely wet in late winter/early spring. Remember to keep the soil light and airy for perennials, so cover them with loose soil and don't pack it in after planting. Dictamnus will grow fine in shade but may be leggy and less sturdy, so planting in more sun is usually preferred.

Moisture:  Dictamnus do not require much moisture to get them started and are quite drought tolerant once established. Early season plantings (April and May) and plants that have no foliage should be started on the dry side. During that time we like to water good one time and then we don't water again until the foliage has started to emerge, then water once or twice a week as needed if the soil is dry. They rarely need supplemental water after they are actively growing.

Spacing:  24 to 36", though it will take several seasons to reach that size.

Depth:  Plant with the top of the dormant growth points about 1/2" below the soil. If they are actively growing it is okay to bury some of the stems and new growth points will actually form on the buried stems. None of the roots or crown should be showing and you can mulch lightly after planting. If the crown becomes exposed it should be recovered with soil or buried deeper as they tend to struggle or fail to get established if the roots are showing.

General Instructions:  Amend your garden with compost or peat humus to enrich or loosen the soil, if needed, however Dictamnus are very adaptable to just about any well-drained soil condition. Mix a couple teaspoons of garden food or bone meal into the planting hole if desired. Plant the roots as listed above, then water in once. They prefer a slightly dry start when they are dormant in spring and have no foliage. Once they are actively growing it is alright to give them supplemental water once or twice a week, but only if needed.

Landscape Uses:  Use gas plant as a backdrop to lower growing perennials such as hardy Geraniums, dwarf everblooming daylilies, or low growing asters. Or try combining it in the garden with other spring and early summer flowering plants such as bearded Iris, poppies, and peonies. If you are creating a butterfly garden, gas plant grows well with Salvia, butterfly weed (asclepias tuberosa), and coneflowers (Echinacea and Rudbeckia), plus it is an important food source for the larva of the giant swallowtail butterfly. Don't use herbicides on these plants, especially during the summer, so that you can find the giant swallowtail larva happily nibbling away at the foliage.

Hallson Gardens
PO Box 220
Brooklyn, MI 49230

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