So, you want to grow dusty miller in your house or the garden or wanna know about this white shine plant.
Then you have clicked on the correct page. Here, I have covered how, where, when, and why not to grow dusty miller, including a few facts.
So, keep reading.
Dusty miller is a perennial plant species that have attention-grabbing white frost foliage. These silver-white foliage give them a unique look from other green plants.
Jacobaea Maritima (formerly known as Senecio cineraria) is commonly known as Silver ragwort. It is a perennial plant species in the genus Jacobaea in the family Asteraceae which is native to the Mediterranean region.
- It is sometimes called ‘Dusty miller‘ and widely cultivated as an ornamental plant for its white densely wooly hair (tomentose) leaves.
- Silver Ragwort is a white wooly, drought-tolerant evergreen subshrub. There is no trouble in growing Silver Ragwort.
- You can plant it anywhere in pots or gardens and it will grow with reliable silver foliage.
Quick Growing Guide
|Common Name||Dusty miller, silver ragwort|
|Scientific Name||Jacobaea maritima|
|Plant Type||Hardy annual|
|Mature Size||6 to 18 inches|
|Sun Exposure||Full sun|
|Soil Type||Average and well-drained|
|Soil pH||5.5 to 6.0|
|Hardiness Zones||8 to 10|
|Native Area||Mediterranean region|
Dusty miller helps the garden to maintain its beauty throughout the heat of the summer.
Although, its flower bloom is mid-summer small yellow blooms are not considered snowy because they are small and they are also frost tolerant.
The plant size grows 1 foot tall and few flowers bloom in the late summer. This plant is grown as an annual and discarded after the first season.
However, it might be common in USDA Hardiness Zones 8-10, where it is often grown as an herbaceous perennial.
Related Post: 10 Best Foliage Plant To Make Your Garden Beautiful.
- Trim the plant, if it becomes leggy mainly in the mid-summer.
- Although Dusty miller produces lovely flowers, most gardeners find them useless and tend to cut them.
- Remove Dusty miller flowers to make it compact or enjoy its beautiful yellow bloom.
Related Post: 25 Best Perennial Fall Flowers for the beautiful garden
Tips to Grow Dusty miller
They grow a bit overcrowded, so you have to maintain a bit space about 9 – 12 inches for healthy growth.
Silver ragwort grows faster if you cut them, find small parts which become woody or snip. Keep them watered and start cutting in a good quality potting mix.
Photo by Dvortygirl under CC
You can boost growth and produce more reliable yield by using a rooting hormone. This is optional step, plant do root without any supplement, if provide good condition.
Keep in mind to snip the flowers if they have grown from their cutting, to increase root and leaves development. This is not essential if your plant is already established in the garden.
However, it becomes an important factor if you attempt to start a new plant from cutting through strong roots.
Related post: 10 Best Vegetables to Grow for Beginner Gardeners
All varieties of Silver ragworts are best for gardening. Some are very fine, while others are only slightly lobed.
- Variety like “Cirrus” has broad leaves with scalloping on the edges.
- and “Silverado” is the fern-like foliage popular in many gardens.
- Whereas, “Silver Lace” has very fine foliage, as the name implies.
As I earlier mentioned, this species is not good for growing from seed. It might show unexpected results.
Instead, it is better to find plants at your local nursery or garden center. But if you want to give it a try, I will recommend the Silver dust cultivar.
Related Post: Best Dusty Miller Varieties For Indoors & Outdoors
How to Propagate
Growing dusty miller is very easy, you do not need any fancy gardening equipment.
You can grow from seeds as well as division. Although, propagation from seeds is time taking as compared to division. But, we will discuss both methods so that you will be able to propagate at your convenience.
How to grow from seeds
If you decide to grow dusty miller from seeds then you should start from plant school that is pot.
Starting from pots has a few benefits like it will be easy to take care of and monitor their growth, plus you be able to place the pot anywhere.
- Take a medium-sized pot around 5-6 inches wide in diameter.
- Collect 2-3 fresh seeds of dusty miller cultivar, you be permitted to buy or take from other parent plants.
- Avoid using dry or old seeds, they might not germinate.
- Fill one-third of the pot with high-quality potting mix soil. The soil has every necessary minerals and nutrient that will help to thrive a healthy plant.
- Make a hole in the center of the pot with your finger or pencil and put the seeds inside it.
- You should sow 2-3 seeds at a time, sowing many seeds in a single hole might not germinate.
- Do not make holes too deep, you can also press seeds against the soil to sow them.
- Pour some water to make the soil moist. Also, make sure that your pot has adequate drainage holes.
- Good drainage is essential, otherwise, the water gets stuck in the bottom and causes damage to the plant.
- Place the pot in the sunnier spot, where it gets direct sunlight.
- It will take nearly 14 – 15 days to germinate seeds, do not worry if it takes a bit longer.
Photo by vmiramontes under CC
The ideal time to grow from the division is in the fall season when the dusty miller gets dry. By division, you’re able to grow multiple identical plants of the same cultivar.
This is not true with propagation from seeds. Nowadays most plants are cultivars or hybrids if you try to regrow from their seeds. It will not grow identical to the parent plant.
Here, how to do division or propagation from stem cutting:
- First, make a spot to plant stem cutting. Rub the soil to make it smooth, where you have decided to grow.
- Root out dry dusty miller from the soil, do this with your hand (gardener gloves on the hand).
- Split the stems and make different stem cuttings. Take a shear and cut the bottom end of the stem cutting.
- Cut till a white-colored tissue gets visible. Make these stem-cutting stands in the soil by using your hands.
- Sprinkle some nitrogen-rich fertilizer on the surface of the soil, this will help stem to grow roots quickly.
- After some time, spray water on the soil to make it moist.
- The stem cutting will start rooting in 2 weeks and after a month they get well established.
- You also grow them in pots by division method.
Dusty miller care
This plant doesn’t need much care. In simple words, this plant can take care of itself. However, there are some important factors you need to keep in your mind.
Let’s discuss them one by one.
Although, the Dusty miller can tolerate heat it will grow better during the hot month of summer if planted where afternoon shade is available.
But, if you plant them in the shadier conditions, it will stretch out to reach in the sunlight and tends to become leggier.
Photo by CGWF under CC
The foliage of the Dusty miller plant is long-lasting and does not need much watering.
You can water once a week in the mid-temperature and twice if you live in a hotter region.
Soil and Fertilizer
This plant is adaptable to various soil types, prosperous and growing in the acidic clay to sandy loam soil (sand along with varying amounts of silt and clay).
To avoid root rot, the soil must be drained well. You need to water the plant regularly until its root develops.
This plant doesn’t need pruning because it is usually very specific in size and shape.
You should add fertilizer as most soil doesn’t have the proper nutrition to the more dusty miller. The slow-release kind, once each growing season is fine.
How To Transplant Dusty Miller
You can transplant the dusty miller from the pot to the garden when it gets 5-6 inches tall in height or when they need more space to spread.
- To transplant first, let the soil of the plant get dry. For this just leave the plant without water for 2-3 days.
- If you try to transplant from wet soil then roots might get damaged.
- The soil gets soggy than water that swole the roots and makes it soft.
- Early morning is the best time to transplant as there are moisture and less humidity in the air.
- Wear garden gloves and take a grub hoke, toss out the soil around the soil.
- Carefully pick the plant out from the pot grabbing its roots.
- Rub the roots with your hand to remove soil from them. Try to remove as much soil you can.
- Now, make a medium-sized hole where you want to plant.
- Put the plant into the hole and cover the root with the soil. Make sure not a single root gets exposed.
- Spread some nitrogen-rich fertilizer around the plant, it will give an initial boost.
- You can also spread a layer of mulch around the base to keep it moist.
- Now your work is done, leave the plant for a couple of weeks so that it gets settled down.
Pets and problems
Growing Dusty miller can be effectively used as a border or as part of an outdoor container plant because it is resistant to every bug, disease, or problem, you find in the garden.
Photo by SSDS Plant Sale under SSDS Plant Sale
The plant blooms in hot and dry conditions, where most of the troublemakers or pests don’t come.
This is why it can be used as a background plant for low-growing, creeping annual plants, such as wave petunias.
Though, if you see the leaves getting wrinkly, curled, stunted in growth, or even abandoning the stems entirely, check for these tiny suckers. A little spray of insecticides should take care of them.
Related Post: 18 Low Light Houseplants That Bring Peace In The House
Uses of dusty miller
Dusty miller is a herb, which is used to make medicines to cure diseases such as “treat spots before the eyes” and “migraine headache”.
Did I Miss Anything?
Now I’d like to hear from you: which tip from today’s post are you going to try first?
Or maybe, I didn’t mention your favorite plant growing tip. Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.
P.S. I myself reply to every comment
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