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Noelle Johnson Landscape Consulting

Hello. Chances are that our heavy clay soil is the problem. My go to is to add compost to the planting hole at a ratio of 1 part compost to 1 part native soil and mix together well. The compost will help the soil to drain better as well as add nutrients. **It's important to plant it in filtered shade in our desert climate. I hope this helps!

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duplexdy - in Phoenix it needs afternoon shade, or filtered all day shade.

Amending the planting hole just created a "flower pot" of improved soil and you end up with rootbound plants and poor drainage. The Desert Botanic Garden does not recommend amending ... dig a hole 2-3 times wider than the root ball, and as deep as the rootball. Back fill with just the native soil, press it down lightly and water thoroughly.

Mulch around the plants to keep soil moisture.

If it's not thriving, buy a moisture meter and measure soil moisture to see if it's too wet or too dry. Adjust your watering if needed.

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Mary Wiggenhorn

This plant was extremely popular in the New Orleans area some years ago. Suddenly, some sort of blight (fungus?) hit and it died out everywhere in the city within a couple of years. I would think very carefully about planting it. The nurseries don't offer it any more.


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