Caryopteris Dark Knight Shrubs are compact, mounding shrub with dense, fragrant, silver-gray foliage and deep purplish blue flowers over a long blooming season starting in late summer. Valued for its late summer to fall flowers blue flowers, when little else is in bloom. Use en masse to create a wonderful border for perennial beds, or along walks and entryways.
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Caryopteris Dark Knight is a compact, mounding shrub with dense, fragrant, silver-gray foliage and deep purplish-blue flowers over a long blooming season starting in late summer. The purplish-blue flowers attract bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies.
2 to 2.5 feet
2 to 2.25 feet
Forms a mound
August through September
Blue-green fragrant foliage
Prefers dry, average to sandy soil
Water well until established
Extremely attractive when used as a focal point in the mixed border, mass planting; attracts pollinators
How to Care for Caryopteris Dark Knight
Be sure to read our planting instructions to ensure a healthy and happy plant for years to come!
Planting Caryopteris Dark Knight Shrubs
We suggest when planting your newly purchased Caryopteris Dark Knight Shrubs that you dig a hole twice as wide as the root system but not deeper. Depending on the quality of your existing soil, you may need to add a locally-sourced compost or topsoil to the backfill soil. We do not recommend using straight topsoil or compost as a backfill soil for Dark Knight because more times than not these products will retain entirely to much moisture and will cause the root system to rot. Adding compost or topsoil will help the young feeder roots of Caryopteris Shrubs spread through the loose, nutrient-rich soil much easier than if you used solely the existing soil, which more times than not will be hard and compacted. The most common cause of plant death after transplanting is planting the new plant too deep. That is why we do not recommend planting in a hole any deeper than the soil line of the plant in the pot. A good rule is that you should still be able to see the soil the plant was grown in after back-filling the hole.
Watering Caryopteris Dark Knight
After back filling and lightly compacting the 50/50 mix of existing soil and compost give the Caryopteris Dark Knight a good, deep watering. This is not to be rushed. Most of the water you put on the plant at first will run away from the plant until the soil is soaked. A general rule of thumb is to count to 5 for every one gallon of pot size. For example, a one gallon pot would be watered until you count to 5; a three gallon pot would be 15; and so on. Check the plant daily for the first week or so and then every other day there after. Water using the counting method for the first few weeks.
Frequently Asked questions
How do you fertilize Caryopteris Dark Knight Shrubs?
Feeding your plants is probably the single most forgotten part of growing healthy long lasting plants. We recommend feeding your Caryopteris Dark Knight plants in the very early spring and again in mid summer after all new growth has hardened off and it begins to set flower buds. Bio-tone starter fertilizer is the best product to use at the time of planting. Our ideal fertilizer schedule for you to use is as follows. Apply an early spring fertilizer with a product such as Espoma Flower-tone; at the recommended rate this will give the plant a boost of nitrogen potash that will be needed for healthy foliage and stem growth. Follow this up with another early summer application of Espoma Flower-Tone. This will again provide the necessary nutrients to promote a flush of beautiful flowers. Espoma products are easy to use: just sprinkle around the base of the plant and water it in. Be careful with products such as miracle-grow as these products can burn newly planted plants when not used at the recommended rates. Slow-release fertilizer can help prevent rapid soft growth that is vulnerable to diseases and insects.
How do you mulch Caryopteris Dark Knight?
We highly recommend that you mulch your Bluebeard Dark Knight with either a ground hardwood mulch or a ground cypress mulch depending on your local availability. Any type of mulch will do, but cypress or hardwood mulch will be of a higher quality and provide better nutrition overall as they breakdown. Mulching helps to keep weeds away that will compete with your new investment for water and nutrients. A 2 to 3-inch layer of mulch is sufficient, but remember to take care not to cover any part of the stem of the plant with mulch. It's better to leave a one-inch gap of space between the mulch and the stem or trunk of the plant.
How do you prune Caryopteris Dark Knight?
Remove the old flowers of Caryopteris Dark Knight as they become brown and unattractive. This procedure, called deadheading, encourages the plant to produce new flowers, keeping your plant looking attractive throughout the season. Deadheading also prevents Beyond Midnight from spreading through your yard, as it can be an effective self-seeder when the dead flowers are allowed to dry completely and go to seed. This would cause problems for your garden as the seedling would not be Dark Knight.
Prune the central stems of the yarrow if they begin to die back. Remove these brown stems and leaves to give your plant a healthier and more attractive appearance. These plants tend to grow more and more stems, which is why its also recommended to divide Dark Knight Caryopteris Shrubs every few years to rejuvenate the plant. In colder climates, cut it back as one of the last chores in your garden before the snow flies. In warmer climates, cut it back in the spring before it begins to bud. Cutting back will promote new growth, giving you a healthier plant with stronger stems.
When should you prune Caryopteris Dark Knight Shrubs?
Bluebeard Caryopteris Dark Knight should be pruned to the ground during late winter or very early spring before growth starts. Fall pruning, especially in warmer climates, can result in a quick flush of new growth that prevents dormancy and makes winter freezes potentially deadly.