Phlox is a genus that is comprised of both perennial and annual flowering plants. There are 67 different species of phlox. Some varieties of phlox flower during the beginning of spring, while others flower during summer going into autumn. The majority of phlox species originate in temperate regions of North America, but some species come from parts of northeastern Asia.
Some species of phlox can grow to be as tall as 5 feet (such as smooth phlox). However, some smaller varieties, like creeping phlox, only grow to be a few centimeters tall. Phlox flowers can be any color from light blue to vibrant red and white.
There are many different species of phlox. Some of the most well-known varieties include Phlox glabriflora, Phlox caespitosa, Phlox hirsuta, Phlox nivalis, Phlox speciosa, Phlox drummondii, Phlox divaricata, Phlox stansburyi, Phlox subulata, Phlox hoodii and Phlox pulvinata.
Many species of phlox are grown in gardens, due to their ability to attract butterflies. The majority of phlox plants cultivated in gardens are perennials. The plants prefer soil that is well-drained. They thrive in both partial sun and partial shade.
Phlox leaves are occasionally eaten by Lepidoptera larvae, such as Gazoryctra wielgusi, dot moth, Schinia indiana and the hummingbird hawk moth. Phlox is also a source of food for animals, including rabbits, groundhogs and deer.
Phlox plants are highly susceptible to diseases that result from high humidity levels, such as downy and powdery mildew, stem blights and leaf spots. These diseases are often characterized by symptoms such as the leaves drying up and turning yellow. They can be controlled by cutting the frosted stems back during the autumn and then eliminating them. When new growth emerges in the spring, the plants need to be monitored closely for any signs of mildew. Fungicides can be used to combat any mildew that develops. Adding space between phlox plants can also reduce chances of the disease spreading.