Friday, June 25, 2010

Tetrapanax are like rabbits…

For any other gardeners out there like me, who are praying that their Tetrapanax multiplies and creates a little forest, this one's for you…Walking by the gardens at Kennedy School last week I counted over 30 plants in an approximately 8’ x 8’ space.
They had cut down the tall ‘trunk’ from the biggest plant last year (I’d estimate it was about 15’ tall) and this year’s growth is rebounding fast. Let me say it again, there are over 30 plants!!! All volunteers. Wow.

11 comments:

  1. I love it, Loree. But it's kind of a nervous love. I mean, I think it's great when a plant is happy but there is a fine line between healthy and thug. In the setting you've photographed it looks fabulous. If mine looks half this good, I'll be happy. Hopefully the babies can be lifted and replanted?

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  2. Wow is right..I've counted five new shoots from my plant - not bad.
    Sorry, on another subject, I googled earlier"what is that popping sound coming from my Euphorbia " Your post from 2009 came up first... so thank you, I thought at first it was something dropping from my cotinus tree. which stands over the E. it's quite distracting to have it popping at me , as I sit .

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  3. For the record, I tried to transplant some of my volunteers this spring, since I had plenty to spare. They didn't have much of a root system, and they didn't make it. It's an unscientific observation, it might have been my lack of transplanting skill, but the next experiment will take place in fall. It just seems wrong to purchase another plant when there are so many extras from the one.

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  4. Wow... very cool. Propagation at it's easiest!

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  5. Free plants are always fabulous. Unless like your previous commenter mentioned, they become too pushy. From the looks of that plant, I'd be okay with a few extra volunteers :)

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  6. Grace, I have heard from others (+ from Megan below) that they are difficult to transplant. Easy to dig and get rid of but hard to replant with success.

    Linda, wow! A top search result on Google! Funny. I left a couple of blooms on one of my Euphorbia longer than I should have and heard that popping again just a couple of days ago. It's funny how loud and unnerving it can be!

    Megan, agreed (shouldn't need to buy a plant when you've got free ones in your garden). I purchased a couple from a nursery a year or so ago that I swear were volunteers just dug from an employee's garden and planted up the day before. I was so angry when I went to plant them and saw how few roots they had. I should have potted them back up and went back to the nursery but I didn't. Naturally they died. I've been less inclined to purchase from them since.

    Dirty Girl, hopefully everyone who plants this plant knows what they are getting themselves into.

    Laura, so far I am excited about it. Hopefully that feeling will last.

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  7. ...and here I am pulling my Tetrapanax out! As much as I love the look of Tetrapanax 'Steroidal Giant', I'm tired of its habit and furriness. The furry underside of the leaves and stems has become more and more of a nuisance for me. Until I was warned by a plantsman visiting my garden, I didn't realize what in my garden made me feel so itchy and heavy-chested...the Tetrapanax. It is best to wear a mask when working with this plant and ughhh...I don't want to do that! Maybe a fancy hybridizer will breed a Tetrapanax without the furry and rampant traveling habit. All said, I still LOVE Tetra but, for me, its time to start the (perhaps, never-ending) eradication of it....boo hoo!

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  8. I read once that its roots can travel 25 feet and decided it was something I would never use. I've even seen it survive in a zone 5 garden because the bed it was in was bordering a greenhouse.

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  9. I was convinced mine had succumbed to winter cold...and am celebrating the new arrivals. Will we still be celebrating five years from now? Who cares! I will take victory where I can find it.

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  10. Lauren, you're just on the cutting edge! Time to clear out the Tetra to make room for the next hot thing. I know what you mean about the furriness, lucky it doesn't bother me, but it is extreme!

    Kaveh, 25 feet!!! Maybe it's time I rethink the one in the ground.

    ricki, good attitude!

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  11. I have kept all of my friends in Tetrapanax from one plant bought at Cistus 7 years ago. Never had a problem with replanting. If anyone in Portland wants any, you are welcome to a hearty offshoot...

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