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29/07/2013 at 17:50

Hello!

This is my first post on a site like this. I am a complete novice in the garden but v keen to learn and become an expert!

I planted a lupin last year that died off quite soon after, I cut it back to ground level and this year I was delighted when it produced several large flowers (almost too large dare I say?!). The problem was no sooner had the bright flowers bloomed they began to die off to seed pods. Is this normal? 

Coupled with this the leaves have been badly eaten, I'm assuming by slugs and snails. I put down pellets and egg shells as recommended by my mother in law, but to no avail.

Should I now cut back to ground level again as it looks very poor and sorry for itself. How can I avoid these issues next year?

TIA for your help

29/07/2013 at 17:57

Cut off the flower spikes and leave the rest of the plant to die down naturally. If the seeds are ripe [ dark brown with the casing starting to split open ] then you can save them and grow more plants [ I often sow lupin seeds now ] Next year the plant should come again. Lupins are a favourite of slugs and snails so you should consider prevention once the plant starts to grow again.

29/07/2013 at 18:43

Hello luckyVal.....very warm welcome to the forum.

Lupins seem to be attacked badly after flowering.....usually tiny snails. They do look unsightly then ( that's why I dig them up, split them and pot up.  I use the space for summer flowerer)

They should flower for a few weeks with lots of smaller flowers to come after the main spikes have gone over.  For me, as soon as the main flower spike starts to go over, I remove it, ASAP.  You will get a much longer,flowering period if you don't delay.

29/07/2013 at 18:44

Yes val thats normal with lupins it's all over very soon, but a great show while it last. You could as punkdoc say's collect the seed pods when ready and plant up for free plants next year, the one you have will be back spring next year for an early summer flower. If you chopped the dead heads of sooner, without the plant wasting energy on seed making, you might of got a second flush of smaller flowers. I find the second flush is always much smaller.

29/07/2013 at 18:45

lol verdun we must of been typing at the same time. we do the same with our lupins.

29/07/2013 at 19:02

Wow great idea with the lupins.... I cut my flower spiis off this year afree they had flowered and am now enjoying a 2nd flush, although not as big they are still a delight! Have you tried coffee grounds? Starbucks and costa will give you bags of the stuff I put it on my compost heap last year but I have been told it deters slugs and snails! Plus smells great after rain lol

29/07/2013 at 20:43

Great minds Zombie!  

Interesting idea Stacey re costa.  I might just ask for some.  Best around acid lovers I think.

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