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Stocks that give you something extra.

Stocks that give you something extra Which stock variety is best? In our test garden last winter, we planted the four kinds shown below right. They are improved plants that give you something extra for special purposes; the two Trysomic types (center in picture) are particularly outstanding. In mild climates, you can plant stock this month.

Early to bloom, last to finish

Especially if you live inland, have a short growing season, or plant later than is best for your area, quick-flowering. Trysomic stock can beat the heat where slower kinds fail. In our tests, their first bloom finished by mid-June, before taller kinds reached full height or formed side shoots. After we cut them back below the origin of their flowering side shoots, they produced a second, almost equally generous bloom that continued into late summer.

The sweet-scented, double flowers of Trysomic stock are long-stemmed enough for bouquets, but short and sturdy enough to stand up without staking.

Big and bountiful, but slow

In mild coastal areas, you can probably risk waiting for the longer stems and bigger flower heads of Giant Imperial, the tallest and oldest variety of these stocks. Plant Giant Imperial near others to stagger bloom; it peaked just about the time others needed cutting back to foliage.

Plant in the ground or in big tubs; in containers these tended to lean and twist unless staked. Once bloom began, it continued profusely into late summer.

For containers or low edging

Midget bloomed fast, stayed neatly compact, andwas the best suited to low or small pots. Overall, however, it was least satisfactory. First to bloom, it was also first to quit; this green-leafed variety is more sensitive to heat than its gray-leafed cousins. It also appears to be more frost-tender. Although it recovered quickly, its leaves burned lightly in frosts that left the others unscathed.
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Copyright 1990 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Jan 1, 1990
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