Do I dare try planting garden phlox

stir_fryiJune 19, 2014

I have always loved the look of this plant and it is finally in garden centers by me.

My neighborhood is full of rabbits -- I see at least 2 a day.

Am I asking for failure?

I do have some cinnamon oil spray -- but you have to spray it everytime it rains.

Is delpinium a better choice or no different?

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Mine have never been touched by my phlox!

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 5:30PM
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Stirfry, we do see rabbits in our garden, at least in spring, when the beds are lower (shorter perennials are in bloom).

We also have a lot of garden phlox (blooming summer and some into the fall).

I've never seen any evidence of rabbit damage to garden phlox here. And we never spray anything.

Picture July 30, 2013:

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 6:02PM
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Connie K

I'm over run with rabbits. They love creeping phlox, but haven't eaten garden phlox. I think you'll be fine.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 6:39PM
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a2zmom(6a - nj)

No bunny damage on mine either. I used to get a free pruning by deer early in the season but after that they'd leave it alone.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 9:24PM
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Good to hear.

Last year they destroyed my coneflower, black eyed susans and shasta daisys.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 10:33PM
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unfortunately rabbits love my tall garden phlox. They can eat all the leaves on the lower branches. Fortunately for me , my husband made each plant a wire cage (very easy to do if you have the materials).

I have 2 varieties and love the long blooming flowers. in my garden, they bloom from late June-mid July to Sept/October if dead headed. They deserve a place in every sun perennial garden (IMHO)


    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 11:10PM
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My lil bunny hasn't eaten the phlox (he did chomp down all my hollyhock seedlings... have I mentioned this before? lol). I have blue paradise - its wonderful and the hue of the flowers changes from lilac to deep blue/purple throughout the day and season.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2014 at 6:07AM
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We have lots of bunnies hopping around, but they seem to leave my flowers alone. Now, the deer and the woodchucks are another story. Where I live, phlox are deer food. I love phlox but so does the wildlife. A shame because they are so beautiful.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2014 at 7:00AM
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We have several baby bunnies that have been eating all our phlox down to a nub. For the longest time, we were wondering when on earth the phlox was going to start to grow. We waited and waited and finally it dawned on us - duh - the little evil *&!% rabbits have been trimming them all down (and we probably have about 30 plants) to ground level this whole time. We've caught 1 bunny with a havahart trap, have been spraying the entire garden with liquid fence, and there has been minor improvements, but there still isn't a single stalk of phlox and it's June 20. >:: I am so angry I could spit. (or have bunny stew if I can catch more of them!!!!! j/k - we just released it a few miles away from our house).

    Bookmark   June 20, 2014 at 11:17PM
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Well, I bought two Lauras yesterday to plant.

I will be so mad if those rodents eat them.

This is when I wish my cat was an outside cat.....

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 11:43AM
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Connie K

Stir Fry, are you sure it's rabbits getting your shasta daisies, cone flowers, and black eyed susans? I have a bunch of rabbits and they don't touch those flowers, but I had a groundhog for many years who would destroy lots of plants.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 3:58PM
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calistoga_al ca 15 usda 9

I love phlox,so do my deer. For some reason, phlox are not grown here very much, no not because of the deer. Our summers are known for low humidity and no rain, which suits phlox just fine, as long as the soil moisture is maintained preferably by a drip system. We never have a problem with mildew or any fungus disease on phlox. I often put them in plant sales and they are seldom recognised even in bloom. Al

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 4:55PM
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digginginthedirt -- I live in a residential neighborhood and have never seen a groundhog in my life. I do however see several rabbits a day -- today there was one just outside my living room window in front of my knockout roses.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 8:59PM
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The tell-tale sign the damage was done by a rabbit: the cut is at a 45ð angle. Those destructive little %$#!s have not only decimated our phlox, they have completely eaten every single stalk and leaf of our delphinium (and continues to eat any new shoot that peeks up from the root), eaten most of our coreopsis, echinacea, heliopsis, yarrow, and variegated hosta. They have eaten all the petals off my wave petunias and chewed off the tender new bottom branches of all my rose bushes. I've sprayed that vile liquid fence all over and they think it's salad dressing. I am seriously beside myself. I hate those rabbits with a passion!!!!! >:\ Grrrrr!!!!!

This post was edited by marthastoo on Sat, Jun 21, 14 at 22:23

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 10:20PM
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vasue(7A Charlottesville)

The traditional defense to dining preferences of rabbits is one of those folding wire "rabbit" fences with legs set into the dirt, or something similar like wire mesh. They come knee-high & slightly shorter and can be used to protect a general area or just a specific plant. Useful, too, to corral floppy plants inconspicuously. More decorative permanent edging & fencing with non-squirmable spacing does the trick, with buried mesh to prevent digging underneath.

Surrounded by woodlands here, with many rabbits & other wildlings, all with tummies to fill! Find encompassing the beds with plants they don't like deters them from exploring the interior. Lavender, monarda, salvia, heuchera, dusty miller & more work as edging. While waiting for plants to originally fill in, those rabbit fences come in handy! After that, I don't clear the foliage in the Fall even on those not evergreen - perhaps the oils in the leaves & stems continue to repel them or they've decided by then those beds are not interesting?

A few of the deer, a small minority of the several herds here, find perfumed phlox irresistible as they begin to bloom (ditto roses). Those are protected by lavender, agastache, others high in essential oils, thick floppy plants & those that obscure their footing. Deer here are very careful where they step while browsing & hesitant to risk where they can't see bare ground, reluctant to even jump into such unsafe territory. Even wire fences laid on the ground in plain sight on grass exclude them (but not the rabbits!), as do upright jumpable fences if the flower or veggie bed is long & narrow without a clearly visible landing place.

While redoing a 15x20' bed off the front walk last year, potting up some plants temporarily & leaving others, wound up with tempting open areas in the process. Set empty flower pots on bare soil to keep them from advancing into the bed, on the theory of unsure footing. Sure enough, it worked!

With all critters, seems a game of wits & strategy as much as one of claiming territory by fencing...

This post was edited by vasue on Sun, Jun 22, 14 at 13:48

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 1:27PM
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