With its feathery silver-gray leaves, dusty miller is a striking and unusual plant that will provide an accent for other plants in a container or along a border. Although the plant will sometimes develop tiny yellow blooms, they are extraneous and should be removed, because dusty miller is grown for its distinctive foliage. Dusty miller is an easy plant to grow, and requires only minimal care to look its best.
Plant dusty miller in a sunny spot and water the plants daily for two to three weeks. Once established, the dusty miller won't need much water and once a week will be sufficient, unless the weather is hot and dry.
Spread a 2- to 3-inch layer of organic mulch, such as peat moss or dried grass, around the plants. Mulch will help control weeds, enrich the soil and preserve moisture in the soil.
Scatter a tablespoon of all-purpose granular fertilizer around each dusty miller when you plant it in the spring. This is all the fertilizer dusty miller will need, unless it's planted in containers. If so, feed it twice monthly.
Prune dusty miller back by 1/3 in August, to keep the plant compact and rounded. Pinch off any flowers that appear, so water and nutrients will be directed to the foliage.
Select this popular plant for its adaptability. Plant in sun or part shade. It thrives in damp, organic soil and, when established, is drought-tolerant.
Choose dusty miller for its height, which ranges from 6 to 24 inches tall, and its ability to grow quickly into a sprawling gray mound of soft-textured leaves.
Look for foliage to blend into your landscape design. You can find dusty miller plant varieties with leaves that are shaped like straps, oak leaves and fine lace.
Use dusty miller for edging, border or container landscaping. Excellent for contrast plantings, the silver plant provides background for colorful bedding flowers.
Watch for pests like slugs and nematodes. Using your preferred control method, lift the low-spreading branches and treat the ground around the plant, before replacing foliage.
Water plants cautiously, as dusty miller is prone to root rot and stem rot. Plant in well-drained soil where air circulates freely, allowing foliage to dry after watering.
Dusty miller is an herbaceous perennial flower that grows from spring to fall. As the flowers appear, typically in spring or summer, remove the buds. Some dusty miller cultivars rarely bloom.
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