Nowadays is the time of the second birth of phloxes! These flowers are very beautiful, original and have thousands of varieties. Their smell is strong and wonderful. Phloxes look great in composition with other flowers and plants. It looks great either lonely and in groups. They’re one of the best flowers for landscape designers! In this article we share the secrets and rules how to make phlox blossom more rich and beautiful.


Right place for phlox to grow
Soli preparation and fertilizer usage
Plant planting rules
Thinning and weeding
Support of tall phloxes
Trimming of phloxes
Renew plants

Right place for phlox to grow

Choosing right place for phlox is the most important question and it has direct influence for their health!

The best place for phlox is in partial shade. They like sun, but on the open sunlight, in sunny day, flowers and buttons miss its water and color very quickly. Either overheating the roots, especially in a hot day, can lead phlox to death.

Love humid and watering. It is good for phloxes to grow in humid climate and humid soil. And they feel perfectly well on the places with high level of groundwater, but they need about 30 sm. over the waterline. If water is less than 30 sm. from the ground top, or can’t go through the ground quickly, mound and/or drainage must be done.

Without strong wind. Flowers and buds destroyed from wind so, they should be protected. It is especially important for tall varieties.

Soil preparation and fertilizer usage

Phlox has .wide and strong root system, not deep underground: 15 — 30 sm. (remember, if underground water higher that level, mound must be done).

Sandy soil is the best for phloxes. It should add decomposed compost (10 – 15 kg. per square meter), or any rotted manure, or vermicompost, all with adding some wood ash.

Clay soil (esp. heavy and hard clays) must be improved: 1. For air exchange and friability: sand or sawdust, crushed bark, vermiculite, straw… must be added. 2. Drainage must be done, not more than 50sm below the top of the ground level. 3. Any organics: compost, rotted manure, bio humus and of course wooden ash. This is important, because phlox roots need in air and organic.

For sour soil must be provided limed. About 200 — 300grams of lime per 1 m2. Phloxes can’t stand sour soil.

It’s very good to add mineral fertilizers into any soil for phloxes.

Nitrogen fertilizers stimulates growth of plants, especially leaves. When lack of nitrogen, leaves begin to be pale and growth stopped.

Phosphoric fertilizers make blossom more rich and strong either seeds more livable and increase it’s resistance to climate conditions. Help to protect plant from the most of the illness (include fungal).

Potassium fertilizers increase winter hardiness, resistance to illness, support better quality inflorescence, make flowering more prolonged. Potassium makes roots more strong, so it’s important in autumn. Lack of potassium appeared on curling and dry brown rim around the leaves.

Very easy to buy a complex fertilizer, which consist of all these elements. In this case no need in any fertilization first year. More about fertilization of phloxes is here.

Plant planting rules

Planting of new plants with close roots could be the whole season. For plants with open roots much better (but not critically) to land them in spring or autumn. Ideal if waste plants were deleted before fertilizers added. Holes must be digged about 25 — 35sm not less than 40sm, one from another. Diameter of holes must provide free spread of roots in it. Dry soil must be moistening.

For plants with damaged roots sand plate must be done fof better adaptation on a new place.

Organic and mineral fertilizer must be added into holes, trees ashes, or even trees coal is very good too. Root collar must be lower than 2 — 3 sm below ground level.

Spring planting. Better time to plant is the time of start growing, in early spring (from the first shoots to 10sm). Not good to do it later, because of the plants in active growth suffer more.
Autumn planting. Best time for autumn planting is the period after active flowering and till 2 month before winter. To safe warm and humid is very good to mulching them.
If you get phloxes later, bury it 10sm deep into ground until spring.


Phloxes feel bad without water. In dry periods they strongly need in regularly watering. Without it their leaves became yellow and flowers small.
Sprinkling of phloxes isn’t a good method of watering, because of the sun burns and either fungal disease. So the best way is to water directly on the root in the morning or evening, in hot seasons, at least once a week. Soil must be humid not less than 20sm under the top, so it is about 10 — 15 liters per 1 m2 of worm water.

To avoid crust on surface of soil ripping on 2 — 3sm under the plant or mulching is very useful. Especially important to water phloxes before wind.


For better growth and flowering phloxes needs of nutrients. First feedings should be done the 2 year after planting. No need to put any fertilizers first season, esp. if enough nutrients were put into soil while planting. Only mulching could be useful.

While growing, phloxes take nutrients from soil and from the second season it should be compensate. But additional feedings provided only on low quality pour soils. When plant growing on rich of organic soil it’s no problem not to feed them for years, just watering.

Organic and mineral fertilizers used to feedings, like when soil preparation.

As fertilizers added only to plants when they actively grow, its quantity and composition depends on life cycle. Normally fertilizers added into soil 3 times per season:

First feeding in spring, in the beginning of May. Plant is in need of ammonium sulfate, urea or ammonium nitrate. Nitrogen make leaves, stems and flowers more strong and big.

The second feeding, in summer, in the middle of June with nitrogen, phosphor and potassium. It is better to water plants with organic fertilizers: poultry manure (1 kg:20 liters) or cow manure (1:10).

Third time, in the end of summer, phloxes must get more potassium and phosphoric mineral fertilizers. Mostly in July, after flowers opening, for better colors and to strengthen plants to winter. Superphosphate 20 gram + wood ash 1 glass + 10 liters of water are very good.

Thinning and weeding

Flowerbed must be clean from weeds. Either, to increase beauty of flowers, very important to cut weak stems and leaves. This will make steams more strong and rich flowering. Bottom leaves become old quite quickly and must be deleted to prevent spreading of illness and pests.

Support of tall phloxes

Tall phloxes can’t stand without support. Wind and rain can break them, so when they reach 40-50 sm high they must be supported.

Trimming of phloxes

Spring trimming of phloxes. Some gardeners trim phloxes in spring. This procedure prolongs growth, slow down flowering and makes flowery more rich — 3 stems at place of 1 cutted. Though some gardeners against spring trimming, insisting that flowers in this case become smoler.

Regular trimming. With growth it is important to delete weak stems and parts, in this case water and nutrients go into more strong stems.

Autumn trimming. Right (not less than 10sm from the ground) and in time trimming is the way to good health and more flowering. Early flowering varieties must be cutted in the end of August — early September. Late blooming — in the end of October. More late trimming provoked illness and pests.

Renew plants

Phlox, especially paniculate, must be renewed one time per 3 — 5 years. This flower produce 2 — 3 root shoots per year, as a result steams in the middle of the plant suffer from absence of water and food and this resulted to illness.

There are 3 ways to renew phlox:

1. Divide plant for some parts. Dig out and divide it by hand or cut with a showel for 2 — 3 parts. These parts will give flowers next year.
2. Often and better for plant, to cut out one steam with root and 2-3 buds. For this, plant must be digged out, cleaned from soul and cut. Plant dividing provide from May to September, better in may.
3. Cuttings of Phlox. Some gardeners make cuttings and throw out old plant. Cuttings have stronger immune system and they can live long and healthy.


Mulching of ground around the plant is very useful by some reasons: water safe — actual for sandy soil, weed control -it is difficult for weeds to grow through mulching, protection of root system from frost in winter.
As mulch used bark, peat, humus, rotted sawdust, straw… Trees ash must be added under the mulch, to protect from pests and illness.

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