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Author Topic: Vitex  (Read 3285 times)
MrILoveTheAnts
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« on: December 14, 2007, 11:30:09 PM »

I think I found the next flowering tree to install in my yard. I'm not to keen on it resembling Cannabis sativa, as some of my neighbors behind me have been rushed to the hospital for ODing. Anyway it's called Vitex agnus-castus and it's just hearty where I am. It's basically a butterfly busy turned into a tree.
http://www.floridata.com/ref/v/vitex_a.cfm
http://www.delange.org/ChasteTree/ChasteTree.htm
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reinbeau
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« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2007, 07:10:17 AM »

My mother had one of those for many years, but a particularly harsh winter did it in (we're in zone 6a).  Lovely tree, I'm sure the girls would have loved it.
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- Ann, A Gardening Beek -  ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2007, 09:59:59 AM »

The leaves also bear a striking resemblance to those of the infamous marijuana or hemp (Cannabis spp.) plant which provides yet another common name, hemp tree.
Are you sure you don't want to use it put some other plants near it and confuse the DEA? Wink
It's for the bees.....yeah that's it. Smiley

I believe you are zone 6. It says it will grow there but to put near a wall to protect it from harsh winters.  I have seen this plant around. It is very pretty. Never thought about for the bees. I may have to rethink that. I am zone 10.

Sincerely,
Brendhan

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MrILoveTheAnts
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« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2007, 10:43:55 AM »

The leaves also bear a striking resemblance to those of the infamous marijuana or hemp (Cannabis spp.) plant which provides yet another common name, hemp tree.
Are you sure you don't want to use it put some other plants near it and confuse the DEA? Wink
It's for the bees.....yeah that's it. Smiley

If I grew it for any reason other then bees I think it would be to see if my parents recognize the leaf structure.
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randydrivesabus
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« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2007, 11:53:35 AM »

hmmm...i don't think it looks like pot at all.
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reinbeau
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« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2007, 01:17:06 PM »


I believe you are zone 6. It says it will grow there but to put near a wall to protect it from harsh winters.  I have seen this plant around. It is very pretty. Never thought about for the bees. I may have to rethink that. I am zone 10.

Sincerely,
Brendhan


As I said, yes, it is hardy in zone 6, but a harsh winter will do it in - whether or not it's against a wall.  As for you, Brendhan, down in Zone 10, you are on the other end of the 'hardiness' zone, you may have problems with it due to high heat, stronger sun, not enough water (it prefers a moderately moist soil).  I'm not saying it isn't worth growing, anything beautiful is always worth it, however, knowing the native growing conditions and trying to mimic that is the best with marginally hardy plants in your garden.
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- Ann, A Gardening Beek -  ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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Cindi
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« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2007, 01:44:24 PM »

What a beautiful shrub.  Another plant that I would say smells and the leaves look like cannibus is Cleome.  I grow the Ruby Queen cultivar and it is an amazing and beautiful plant, thorny, but makes a great cut flower for the cut flower arrangement on the kitchen table.  This site describes it as smelling like a skunk, which I also agree, but some call cannibus varieties skunk too, hee, hee.  Ann, too bad that one of your Mother's went by the wayside eh?  Have a beautiful and wonderful day.  Cindi

http://cinticapecod.blogspot.com/2006/07/stinkin-cleome.html
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2007, 01:51:41 PM »

That is interesting, Cindi, I have cleome (never knew what it was before you mentioned it:)) that comes up every year in the garden.  It does grow large and weedy but is very hardy.  The bees love it, I enjoy watching them flying getting pollen and also nectar.  It produces seeds like nobodies bisness.  I generally have to hoe up thousands of them, and let maybe siz of them grow.
It is neat that by looking at the stem you can see when bad overcast non-flying weather occurs...that is the section of the stem without pollinated seed pods.

I have never ever noticed anything bad smelling about it.  I'll have to check next july.

Rick
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Rick
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« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2007, 08:58:57 AM »

Rick, I am sure it is the same plant, it self-seeds like nothing on this earth for surely.  So, next spring go and take a whiff of this plant's leaves, better yet, break some leaf up, you will know what I mean, stinkeeeeeeeee!!!!!  Have a great and wonderful day, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #9 on: December 24, 2007, 09:02:53 AM »

Vitex, here in Texas, is a big deal for a lot of beekeeprs. It is a heavy nectar producer and when in bloom, the bees are very frantic when they work it. I grow a lot of it and have a couple cultivars of it. It does seem to have a rather wide growing range (zone wise) but it really shines in Zone 7,8 & 9.  It is amazingly easy to grow..both from seed and cuttings. It is also often called Pepper bush...the leaves have a very distinct peppery (pleasant) smell. The cultivated forms, such as Channey Creek, are particularly pretty. It is also easy to control as to what form you want it to grow; hard prunning will keep it short or, if left alone, it can become a VERY large (12-15 ft) shrub/tree. A nice addition to the garden for sure.
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Cindi
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« Reply #10 on: December 24, 2007, 09:17:16 AM »

Sir Stungalot.  Now this is beginning to intrigue me.  Ann had a comment in a post some time ago about what she called the "Sweet pepperbush", it was known as a different name than Vitex.  I am going to do some searching and find that post that she had mentioned this plant in...hold on......searching

http://forum.beemaster.com/index.php?topic=11473.msg78827#msg78827

Gotta love the extended search option in this forum.

So, as you can see, Clethra is a cultivar of Vitex it sounds like.  I forgot about this plant until this post came up and now I have actually added Clethra to my list of plants for the bees, along with the other myriads of stuff.  I am going to google Vitex and the Channey Creek cultivar that you speak about, I will learn more about it.

I asked Ann if she could obtain from some of the Clethra plants that may have set seed if she could gather some.  But I think it was too late in the season for gathering.  But I have seed sources everywhere, I am searching for these now.  Have a beautiful and wonderful day.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
Cindi
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« Reply #11 on: December 24, 2007, 09:20:21 AM »

It is neat that by looking at the stem you can see when bad overcast non-flying weather occurs...that is the section of the stem without pollinated seed pods.
Rick

Rick, I was meaning to ask you what you meant by the above statement about the stem and overcast, bad weather?  What happens to the stem, I am certainly more than curious.  You must have really been looking hard at the plant, deep observation to have seen something like whatever you are describing.  That is cool.  But you have to tell me your story about it.  Be intricate with the details.

Ever noticed the thorns on Cleome?  They are so sharp, just like the roses, go figure, what is the point anyways (hee, hee, get it....the point).  Have a beautiful and wonderful day.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
reinbeau
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« Reply #12 on: December 24, 2007, 04:51:05 PM »

Sir Stungalot.  Now this is beginning to intrigue me.  Ann had a comment in a post some time ago about what she called the "Sweet pepperbush", it was known as a different name than Vitex.  I am going to do some searching and find that post that she had mentioned this plant in...hold on......searching

http://forum.beemaster.com/index.php?topic=11473.msg78827#msg78827

Gotta love the extended search option in this forum.

So, as you can see, Clethra is a cultivar of Vitex it sounds like.  I forgot about this plant until this post came up and now I have actually added Clethra to my list of plants for the bees, along with the other myriads of stuff.  I am going to google Vitex and the Channey Creek cultivar that you speak about, I will learn more about it.


Actually, Cindi, they aren't related at all.  Vitex is in the Lamiaceae (or Mint) family, and Clethra is in it's own family, Clethraceae.

Quote
I asked Ann if she could obtain from some of the Clethra plants that may have set seed if she could gather some.  But I think it was too late in the season for gathering.  But I have seed sources everywhere, I am searching for these now.  Have a beautiful and wonderful day.  Cindi


I haven't forgotten about the seeds, Cindi, I'll wander down to the end of the road and see if I can snag a pod or two.  Wink
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- Ann, A Gardening Beek -  ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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Cindi
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« Reply #13 on: December 25, 2007, 10:29:44 AM »

Ann, good, one day, go for that wander.  PM if you can get your hands on some, that would be cool.

I googled Vitex and Clethra, know a little more about each one now.  Great day, best day.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #14 on: December 26, 2007, 07:25:17 PM »

Can someone give a link or clue me in to the "zones"Huh
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reinbeau
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« Reply #15 on: December 26, 2007, 08:36:23 PM »

Can someone give a link or clue me in to the "zones"Huh


Plant hardiness zones, you can check yours here.   
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- Ann, A Gardening Beek -  ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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LocustHoney
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« Reply #16 on: December 26, 2007, 08:51:47 PM »

Zone 7a!!! thanks.
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Cindi
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« Reply #17 on: December 27, 2007, 10:05:21 AM »

LocustHoney.  Do an internet search of "zone maps", there are lots, but this is one that stuck out in my face.  It looks pretty good, good luck, they are very useful. Have a wonderful and great day.  Cindi

http://www.bhg.com/bhg/category.jsp?categoryid=/templatedata/bhg/category/data/garden_zonemaps_07032001.xml
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2007, 06:52:01 PM »

Do any of you do "hot houses"Huh For the winter months of couse.
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reinbeau
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« Reply #19 on: December 27, 2007, 07:51:28 PM »

No, they'd be too expensive to heat for me, although I'd love to be able to go into a greenhouse in the winter and have something in bloom.
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- Ann, A Gardening Beek -  ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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« Reply #20 on: December 28, 2007, 09:47:34 AM »

I'm with Ann on this.  Nope, too costly. But.....come the end of January I will be firing up my greenhouse furnace, setting seeds for the flowers that need months and months of nurturing to come to flower.

I am fortunate that I have this greenhouse.  It has an oil furnace and my Husband built me banks and banks of lights. Flourescent, one cool one warm.  These lights sit above slatted benches and I can grow thousands and thousands of plants, if I so chose.  I once had a small backyard nursery open to a small clientelle that I kept for about 14 years, until I retired the business.  Too much work, too little money.  When it became work, then it was time to pack it in.  But......I still stand in wonder at what I produce from this 10 X 40 greenhouse.  I am a grateful woman for this, and come May when plants are set outside, I stand in deeper wonder still.  Have a beautiful and wonderful day.  Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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