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I've been researching beesource and other areas trying to determine which nectar-producing flowering plants do well from July through September in the Deep South. So far I've come up with Anise Hyssop, Borage, Caryopteris and White Salvia as potential candidates, but would definitely appreciate any experience/feedback you may have growing flowers during this time period as propogating these varieties, especially the Caryopteris and White Salvia, from seed takes some initial greenhouse-style procedures from everything I've been reading. I'm up to the challenge, but just want to make sure it's worth my time.

I have four 300-foot irrigated rows I just tilled up to use as a pollinator habitat area. I have initially planted a seed mixture of 5 clovers (yellow and white sweet clover, Ladino and white dutch clovers and Alsike) as a ground cover, but would also like to add some bush-like plantings to provide nectar sources during our hot summer months down here. All 4 of my rows have full sun.

Any thoughts will be greatly appreciated.
 

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Plant Russian sage, it gets to be like a bush after several seasons, mine are about 3-4 ft. tall and they will get taller than that. Once established they do very well in hot dry climates. They have a very long bloom period that just never seems to end. The honey bees are all over the blossoms from morning till night, the nectar production has got to be tremendous with all the activity on the blossoms. They are extremely hardy plants, rabbits and deer don't mess with them at all. If I had the space, this is one plant that I would go overboard with. I do like borage alot also, which you mentioned, of course that is an annual, but it comes back from its seed really well year after year, and it is a bee magnet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Plant Russian sage, it gets to be like a bush after several seasons, mine are about 3-4 ft. tall and they will get taller than that. Once established they do very well in hot dry climates.
You mentioned it does well in hot, dry climates. Our humidity in the summer averages day and night between 60-75%. Do you think high humidity would effect its production?

Update: I just checked and it performs well in hot, humid climates as well. Thanks for the advice!!! :thumbsup:
 

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I read that the sweet clover is good nectar producer but have never try it yet. Borage will come back every year so hard to get rid of that they scattered their seeds everywhere. The Russian sage take some time to develop into a full healthy shrub.
 

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Update: I just checked and it performs well in hot, humid climates as well. Thanks for the advice!!! :thumbsup:
I can confirm that -- I've had russian sage and it did wonderfully for years, with no TLC other than appreciation. I tried moving it one too many times, and my bushed died, and it's been very hard to get hold of. Milkweed is a prolific seed producer, and a few plants turn into many pretty quickly. You also get the benefit of monarch butterflies and aphid control...that is, aphids love milkweed, but don't seem bothered by them. I put them next to roses or other delicate plants and aphids will cover the milkweed and not touch the rose. Rudebeckia has also done ridiculously well in my yard, so much so that I treat it as another lawn weed that gets moved down with the johnson's grass! You could use all three plants, and have a lovely blue-and-orange blooming season that would begin in May and last until frost.
 

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Russian sage can be easily grown from the seeds in a flower pot.
I am growing some now from seeds sowed earlier this Spring. The last
year's plant is growing nicely as well. I would plant more from the seeds
ordered on the net. They like full sun than in the shade.
 
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