Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Perennials tend to grow tall in my garden. They end up flopping over like the rudbeckia below. I have a great book called The Well-Tended Perennial Garden by Tracy DiSabato-Aust. In it she explains how some perennials can be pinched or cut back early in the season to promote shorter bushier growth. Of course one needs to know which ones can be so treated, but I find most of mine can. At least all the overly tall tending to flop varieties benefit from this treatment. This spring I did not do any cutting back, except for the mum, which must be continually pinched until even up to the first of August, here, to get fall blooms. Otherwise, in this area the mums will bloom in June. I did get a few plants, the dahlias, and heleniums staked with hoops, and that helps, but pinching or cutting back as the plants emerge in spring is easy and results in a better looking plant.