Is alyssum an annual or a perennial?
Technically a perennial, sweet alyssum is widely treated as if it were an annual plant in the North. But it is one of the hardier annuals, able to survive light frosts that would kill tenderer plants. Its rounded clusters of flowers are fragrant.
Yes. Cutting back lobelia plants improves their appearance and health. It also encourages the plant to produce more flowers over a longer period of time. The three types of pruning that benefit lobelia plants are removing spent flowers, pinching, and cutting back.
- Although this annual blooms dependably throughout summer and into fall, it looks better with occasional trimming. A light prune removes the spent flowers and leggy stems so the alyssum maintains its dense mounds of foliage and blooms.
- 'Snow Princess' sweet alyssum. Lobularia maritima 'Snow Princess' is an exceptionally vigorous variety that's heat tolerant and bears clusters of white flowers that are much larger than older varieties. It's strongly fragrant, as well, and grows 6 inches tall but can trail to 5 feet.
- Alyssum plants are small, about a few inches but they spread as much as a foot in diameter. Alyssum flowers are tiny and tightly grouped. By mid-summer, you can smell the sweet scent of alyssum. What's best about alyssum plants is that they are tiny and easy to grow.
Annual lobelia will grow nearly anywhere. Lobelia seeds can be sown directly in the garden or indoors for later transplanting. These plants typically require an area with full sun but will tolerate partial shade. They also prefer moist, rich soil.
- You shouldn't go round the garden munching on everything either, as some flowers, such as foxgloves and lobelia, are poisonous (care should also be taken if you suffer from hay fever, asthma or allergies – either avoid eating flowers, or introduce them slowly and in small amounts).
- Some white flowers that grow in shade are:
- Common Shootingstar.
- Coral Bells.
- When the plants have three leaves, you can plant them outside. It's best to buy transplants and plant them in light, well-drained soil in full sun after the last spring frost. (See your local frost dates.) Petunias can grow in partial shade, but they will have fewer flowers.
Lobelia poisoning occurs when your dog consumes parts of the lobelia plant and is exposed to lobeline, the plant's toxic principle. In terms of its toxicity level, lobelia is rated a major toxin. This means that ingestion of the plant can be the cause of serious consequences which may be fatal.
- According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, camellia is non-toxic to dogs if touched or ingested. There are no known toxins contained in either camellia or tea plants. The most you might expect to see is a bit of vomiting or diarrhea, generally due to the ingestion of plant matter.
- Gardenias are generally considered to be a non-toxic plant to most animals, but there are some exceptions. Horses, guinea pigs, cats and dogs should not be allowed to nibble on any part of these plants. Most other pets would not be affected by this plant.
- The ASPCA makes it very clear that petunias are not toxic to dogs, cats or other animals, but their website contains a very lengthy list of other, equally pretty plants that are mildly or lethally toxic. For that reason, it's not a good idea to allow or encourage dogs to lunch on flowers.
Updated: 29th September 2018