Propagating Blue Mist

caryopteris dark knightQuestion: Can I collect seed from my blue mist shrub and expect it to sprout?

Answer: Blue mist shrubs (Caryopteris ×clandonensis cvs., also known as bluebeard shrubs or blue spirea) have gained in popularity in recent years for good reason, and it’s easy to see why you’d want to increase your holding. These small shrubs offer suberb drought tolerance and bloom reliably in late summer and autumn, with (usually) blue to purple flowers that attract late butterflies. (Shown: ‘Dark Knight’.) Some forms have variegated leaves or white or pink flowers.

To propagate blue mist from seed, collect their fruit—a light brown, winged nutlet—harvest the seeds and place them in damp sphagnum moss in a plastic bag. Put that in the refrigerator for three months, then sow them in pots. Transplant them outside in spring. With a long growing season, they should bloom their first year. Seedlings may vary from the mother plant.

Blue mist shrub can also be propagated by rooting stem cuttings taken in early summer. This ensures you’ll get plants exactly like the original in appearance.

See more late-blooming blue flowers.

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