Laidback Gardener Tip of the Day

Why Does My Fleeceflower Flop?

20150710AQuestion: I have a problem with a plant that collapses every year at the slightest gust of wind or rain: my beautiful giant fleeceflower (Persicaria polymorpha). Is my soil too wet? Even with stakes, I really can’t manage to keep it standing!

France Doucet

Answer: I know this is going to sound weird, but… would it be possible to move your plant to a windier spot? When this plant is constantly moved by gusts of wind since it starts to sprout in the spring, it produces stronger stems. When it is protected from the wind, like with a hedge, a wall or a fence, it produces taller but weaker stems. When a gust of wind suddenly comes barreling through, the weak stems can’t handle it and down they go! Expose it to more wind from the start and your giant fleeceflower will keep on standing tall.

And your soil moist is not a factor as this perennial tolerates both moist soil and dry soils.

Garden writer and blogger, author of 65 gardening books, lecturer and communicator, the Laidback Gardener, Larry Hodgson, passed away in October 2022. Known for his great generosity, his thoroughness and his sense of humor, he reached several generations of amateur and professional gardeners over his 40-year career. Thanks to his son, Mathieu Hodgson, and a team of contributors, will continue its mission of demystifying gardening and making it more accessible to all.

3 comments on “Why Does My Fleeceflower Flop?

  1. Pat Davis

    Just to let you know I grow, Giant Fleece Flower in zone 2b on the Saskatchewan Praires, without any extra cover in Winter.
    It is 4 years old and reaches 6 ft this year,I am so pleased with it as it is my most expensive plant!
    Hope this helps someone.
    Best wishes.

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