The Dwarf Coyote bush is a great groundcover plant used to control soil erosion on sloping land. If you live in a frost-free zone, plant the dwarf coyote bush in the early fall, or winter. For those living in a colder zone, plant this bush in the spring after all danger of frost is past.
The dwarf Coyote bush is hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones 5 through 11. The height of this shrub is 12 and 18-inches, with a spread of 6 to 10 feet.
Prepare the Soil
Pick out the area where you want the Dwarf Coyote bush to grow. The location should have the full sun exposure. Till or dig the area to loosen the ground. Amend the soil with 3 to 4 inches of organic compost to improve drainage and to provide nutrients to the plant. You can also add 1 inch of sand over the soil to help improve the drainage. For best results, the garden soil should be well drained, and sandy with a pH level of 6.0 to 7.0.
Digging the Planting Hole
Dig a planting hole that is twice the diameter of the pot, but keep the depth the same as the rootball. Scuff the sides and bottom of the hole with the edge of your shovel or spade. When you dig the soil compacts around the outside perimeter. This loosens the soil so the roots can penetrate beyond the hole that you dug. If you are planting several Dwarf Coyote bushes, space the holes 3 to 6 feet apart.
When planting trees and shrubs, I usually like to fill the planting hole with water. I then wait for the water to drain away naturally. This ensures that there is moisture deep in the soil for the roots.
Remove the Container
Remove the Dwarf Coyote from the pot by grasping the plant at its base and pulling. If the pot does not come off, tip the plant upside down with one hand supporting the soil at the base of the plant. Bang the rim of the pot against the edge of your worktable. Each time after you tap the pot against the table, give the pot a quarter turn. Sometimes the roots have grown so much that the pot will not release. In that case, use your utility knife to cut the pot away. .
Examine the rootball. If you see the roots growing on the outside of the rootball, gently tease them away with your fingers. Trim away any roots that are broken or diseased to reduce the risk of disease setting in through the damaged area.
Position the roo ball in the center of the planting hole. Check to make sure that the top of the rootball is level with the surrounding soil. If it is too high or too low, adjust the soil until it is even. Before you fill in the hole, make sue the Dwarf Coyote bush is plumb.
Fill the hole around the root ball with the amended soil. As you work, tamp the soil with your hands to remove air pockets.
Water the newly planted Dwarf Coyote bush thoroughly. The water needs to go deep into the soil. So turn the water on to a slow flow and allow it to run for several hours. This allows the water to soak deep into the soil and prevents runoff.
During the first week, water the Dwarf Coyote bush twice. After that, cut back on the watering, but maintain a moist soil until the plants are established.
Place a 4- to 9-inch layer of mulch around the Dwarf Coyote Bush to help the soil retain the moisture content and to prevent the weeds from growing. Do not place the mulch close to the bark. Keep it 1 inch or more away from the bark. When mulch is places against the bark, it keeps the area moist. This makes the shrub more susceptible to disease and insect damage.
In the early spring and fall, feed the Dwarf Coyote Bush with a complete granular food. Mix and apply the fertilizer according to label directions.
Inspect the Dwarf Coyote Bush for aphids and black sooty mold. Good air circulation helps to prevent this. Thin out some of the plants woody canopy. Spray the foliage with a blast of water to knock off the aphids. Make sure to spray the underside of the foliage where the aphids hide and live. Don’t spray the foliage so hard that you hurt the bush though. If you aren’t sure what your bush may have, take an infected piece to the local county extension agent, or to a professional at the garden nursery store.They can tell you what is wrong and how to fix or control the problem.