Peonies are lovely herbaceous plants that bloom for only a short period of time, between late spring and early summer. Towards the end of their blooming period, they’ll start to fade and wither up, and that’s how you’ll know if they’re spent. A great question to ask is should peonies be deadheaded? I’ve done some research and have an answer to this important question.
Yes, peonies should be deadheaded. Deadheading peonies helps them focus their energy on root growth and healthy leaves instead of seed production, and this in turn results in healthier plants.
There is more to this answer, of course. We will be going into more detail regarding deadheading peonies down below, so if you’re interested please keep reading.
- Deadheading Peonies
- Should You Deadhead Tree Peonies?
- Rose Deadheading – How To Deadhead A Rose Plant
- How to Deadhead Roses
- Pruning Roses
- How to prune:
- Bush Roses
- Heritage, Old Fashioned, Species Varieties
- Climbing Roses
- Ground Covers
- Standard Roses
- Weeping Standard Roses
- What to do after pruning:Spray:
- Potted Roses:
- During the flowering season:
- Dead Heading
- Die Back
- The perfect petunia! – Knowledgebase Question
- Deadheading Flowers: Encouraging A Second Bloom In The Garden
- Why You Should Be Deadheading Your Flowers
- How to Deadhead a Plant
- How To Know What Plants To Deadhead And When
- What Is Deadheading, Exactly?
- How Do You Deadhead A Plant?
- How Often Should You Deadhead Plants?
- Common Plants That Require Deadheading
- Low-Maintenance Plants That Don’t Need Deadheading
There are a few reasons to consider deadheading your peonies at the end of their cycle, when they are wilted and drooping. Altogether, deadheading peonies keeps them healthy and looking beautiful. The peony down below is wilting and drooping, and should be deadheaded.
Deadheading spent blooms from peonies is actually helpful to your peonies’ health. Removing the spent flowers stops the plant producing seed pods; instead, the peony can use the energy it would use to produce seeds to storing food supplies. That stored food in turn will help supply the energy needs for the following year’s flowering and growth.
Peony flowers tend to develop fungal diseases as they begin to wilt and rot, like botrytis. Botrytis fungi produces spores and develops along the base of rotting stalks and can survive over winter. If not taken care of, in the spring these same spores can form again and spread to dying blooms and infect them. As the disease progresses, a gray mold will develop and spread to other stems and blooms, potentially affecting the health of the entire peony.
Additionally, it’s important to properly dispose of spent blooms after deadheading. Do not compost them, in case they are infected with botrytis or another fungal disease.
Through deadheading, peonies may be encouraged to bloom for twice as long as they normally would. By deadheading spent blooms, more energy can be used to maintain healthy blooms longer. On top of that, varieties of peonies that produce multiple buds per stem may be coaxed into the production of a few more blooms than they normally would.
Last but certainly not least, deadheading wilted and drooping peony blooms helps your plants appear more visually pleasing. Wilting flowers can often lead to rot, which can attract unwanted insects and create a sorry looking peony plant. These peonies below have been well taken care of and are pleasing to look at.
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How to Deadhead Peonies
Now that we have covered the reasons for deadheading wilting peonies, let’s take a look at a quick step by step guide on how to deadhead spent blooms.
1. Carefully examine the spent blooms. Are there other flower buds on the same stem? You don’t want to cut off any potential blooms.
2. If there are other buds, simply snip off the spent flower head. If there are no other buds, you can follow the flower stem into the plant and make the cut about an inch or so above the foliage so that you don’t have an empty stem protruding.
3. Make sure your shears are clean, as dirty shears can help promote bacterial growth and harm your plant.
4. Dispose of the cuttings into the garbage. Composting them can spread harmful diseases.
Should You Deadhead Tree Peonies?
Yes, you should deadhead tree peonies. Deadheading tree peonies is a bit different from deadheading other peonies. Instead of delicate green stems, tree peonies have woody stems that can grow a bit thick. In the winter, wood can be damaged and even killed off. Remove damaged and deadwood in the late spring by cutting it away, placing your cuts above an outward-facing bud. The stems should be cut at an angle.
Tree Peony Disease and Pests
Tree peonies are also susceptible to botrytis, though its effects aren’t as evident as they are with herbaceous peonies. With tree peonies, their new shoots can suddenly wilt and turn brown. The buds can wilt without even opening, and a white fuzzy mold can develop. When botrytis is discovered, the affected portion should be immediately cut away and disposed of.
Tree ponies are also susceptible to rose borer, which can infest the wood and leave small holes, causing the branches to wilt. The borer adults lay their eggs inside the wood, and the holes in the branches are the most common sign that they are present. When this is noticed, the damaged areas should be removed and disposed of. Prune back the branch several inches past the affected area.
Dabbing a bit of glue onto wounds caused by pruning tree peonies is a technique used by gardeners. When the glue dries, it’ll form a barrier that’ll prevent insects from laying their eggs inside and will help keep your tree peonies healthy.
Will Peonies Bloom More Than Once?
Peonies bloom only once a year, for approximately 7 to 10 days. If you are watering your peonies regularly, take care of them, and deadhead when appropriate, your peony plant will remain healthy and will be ready to bloom again the following year.
However, not every type of peony flowers at the same time. If you are looking to fill your garden with continuous blooms, try planting a variety of different peonies that bloom at different times in the season. Some bloom early in the season while others will bloom later in the season.
We hope you enjoyed this post and found it helpful! Deadheading peonies is important for the overall plant health, and the process differs from tree peonies. Happy gardening!
Rose Deadheading – How To Deadhead A Rose Plant
By Stan V. Griep
American Rose Society Consulting Master Rosarian – Rocky Mountain District
Do you find the idea of wanting to deadhead roses intimidating? “Deadheading” roses or the removal of the old blooms from our roses seems to generate some controversy, much the same as pruning them. On the subject of deadheading rose bushes, I recommend using a method that gives you the results you are looking for. Should someone tell you that you are doing it “all wrong,” do not immediately believe that you are. Let’s look at a two ways how to deadhead a rose plant, both of which are perfectly acceptable.
How to Deadhead Roses
5-Leaf Junction Method to Deadhead Roses
The method I prefer to use for deadheading roses is to prune the old blooms off down to the first 5-leaf junction with the cane at a slight angle leaving approximately 3/16 to 1/4 of an inch above that junction. The amount of cane left above the 5-leaf junction helps support the new growth and future bloom(s).
The cut ends of the canes are then sealed with a white Elmer’s glue. Any white glue of this type will work, but not school glues, as they tend to wash off. The glue forms a nice barrier over the cut end of the cane to protect the center pith from cane boring insects that will cause damage to the cane and can kill the entire cane and sometimes the rose bush. I stay away from the wood glues, as they cause some cane die-back.
The first 5-leaf junction on the rose bush may be aiming in a direction where you do not really want the new growth to go. In such cases, it is fine to prune down to the next multi-leaf to cane junction. Pruning down to the next junction may also be advisable if the cane diameter at the first 5-leaf junction is small and may be too weak to support big new blooms.
Twist and Snap Method to Deadhead Roses
Another method of deadheading, and one that my grandmother used, is to take hold of the old spent bloom and with a quick wrist action snap it off. This method may leave a portion of the old stem sticking up in the air that will die back, thus not really looking so pretty for a while. With some rose bushes this method will also have some weaker new growth that does not support its blooms well, leading to drooping blooms or bloom clusters. Some rosarians tell me they have used this method for years and love it, as it is quick and easy.
I prefer the 5-leaf junction method, as it also gives me the opportunity to do a bit of shaping of the rose bush at this time as well. Thus, when the rose bush blooms again, I can have the look of a beautiful bouquet right there in my rose bed that rivals any such bouquet from the florist shop! Not to mention the benefits of keeping the rose bushes new growth thinned enough to keep good air flow throughout the bush.
Neither deadheading roses method mentioned is wrong. It is all a matter of getting the look you like for your rose bed. The main thing to remember when you deadhead roses is to enjoy your roses and the time spent tending to them brings rewards in many ways. Enjoy your time in the rose bed and garden, they truly are magical places to be!
Stan V. Griep
Colorado Native Rosarian 40+ years
ARS Certified Consulting Rosarian
Denver Rose Society Member
Loveland Rose Society Member
American Rose Society Member
Photograph Anne K Moore
The subject of “deadheading” or the removal of the old blooms from our roses seems to generate some controversy much the same as pruning them. When it comes to deadheading your rosebushes, I recommend using a method that gives you the results you are looking for. Should you be told that you are doing it ‘all wrong’, do not immediately believe that you are.
As a young man, I witnessed and learned various methods of deadheading by my Grandmothers and my Mother. I not only witnessed and learned each method but also saw how the rosebushes responded to each method. For my mother, a side concern of deadheading seemed to be how the overall bush looked after the deadheading routine, as far as its overall shape and harmony with the garden or the rose bed. Deadheading was not only the removal of the spent blooms, it was also a time to shape the rosebush and consider how and where the new growth would come in.
My grandmother, Mary May, would walk around her rose gardens at deadheading time and take a particular spent bloom in her hand. With a quick motion, she would “snap” the bloom off. This would leave a bare stick of a stem standing up in the air a little ways above the foliage. There was no shaping of the bush done with her method, as all she really cared about was the pretty blooms. The looks of the overall bush really did not seem to matter so much to her. She felt that she got repeat blooms quicker using her method and stuck with it.
My grandmother, Molly, would prune off the spent blooms down to a healthy looking leaf set junction with the cane. It did not need to be a five-leaf junction. The pruning point could be at a three-leaf junction as long as the cane looked sturdy and healthy there. Although she did not really concern herself with the overall shape of the rose bush, her method always left the rose bush looking better without all the remaining stems sticking up in the air all over the place. Well, in my opinion anyway!
Over the years, I honestly do not remember the differences in repeat blooming being that great with any of the methods. I do remember my grandmother Mary May that used the “snap-off “deadheading method, complaining sometimes that a new big bloom would sag or “flop over” as its stem was too weak to support the new big rose bloom
I have heard and read that deadheading to the first 5-leaf junction when pruning Hybrid Tea roses is a “myth”. Yet I have observed first hand the problems that can come about by not doing so, especially with large blooms. There have been times when I have pruned, or deadheaded, back to a second five or more leaf junction just because the cane looked too small in diameter to support a new nice big bloom.
One rule of thumb that I have read about was deadheading to the first 5 or more leaf junction where the cane diameter is approximately that of a pencil. There is no need to get out any form of measuring device to check the diameter. It is simply a matter of what looks sturdy. Compare the diameter of the cane or stem at the point considered for deadheading, and the diameter of the stem for the bloom that is to be deadheaded. If the bloom being deadheaded was a nice big one and did not sag or droop, then that same diameter of cane should be sufficient to support the new growth and bloom. If the bloom being deadheaded did have a droopy nature, perhaps it would be best to prune back to a larger diameter leaf-set to cane junction.
With Floribunda and Grandifloras, I learned to prune back to a sturdy looking leaf-set to cane junction. The five-leaf rule does not need to apply with these wonderful bushes. Nor does it apply to deadheading my miniature rosebushes. Still of concern with these rosebushes is keeping an eye on where the new growth will come in, or in other words, deadhead to a leaf-set junction where the new growth will go in the proper direction for the particular bush.
When the overall rosebush has a tight center portion already, it would be best to deadhead to a point where the new growth will go out and away from that tight center growth area. For my floribunda and grandifloras, I prefer to have a full looking bush so I will deadhead to a point where the new growth will come more into the center area of the bush more often than not.
One key thing I recommend before deadheading any rosebush is to step back and take a good look at the current rosebush. Then do your deadheading looking towards where the new growth needs to go to either achieve or maintain the shape that you desire for the overall rosebush.
As one of my final touches after deadheading, I seal the ends of all the freshly pruned canes with Elmer’s White Glue. This helps to keep the cane borers or cane boring wasps from entering into the tender fresh center pith of these cut cane ends causing the death of the cane, a portion of the cane, and even sometimes the entire rosebush.
It is important to use the non-water soluble White glue and not the school glue so that the hard seal maintains over the cut end of the cane and does not wash off. Some folks tell me they have used wood glue for this but I cannot recommend its use, as when I used wood glue it caused significant cane die-back from the point of its application. I have been informed that some formulations of wood glue may contain chemicals that will cause the die back of the living tissues.
My final touch to the deadheading process is to water each rose well and gently rinse down all the foliage on each bush that has been deadheaded. The roses do seem to appreciate as well as respond to this final touch.
Find a deadheading method that gives you the results you like and stick with it. No matter what method or technique you choose, enjoy tending to your roses! They enjoy the time you spend with them and will reward you in full measure.
Read all about Pruning Roses by Stan Griep at the GardenSMART ARTICLES page.
Pruning roses is not difficult, however, it is a task many find daunting due to the vast amounts of information and opinions available on the topic. To be honest, you cannot really prune a rose wrong. Pruning does not harm the rose at all, you will not kill the rose by pruning – so don’t stress!
Pruning is best done mid to late winter or early spring – remember to hold off until the most severe frosts have passed in frost prone areas.
Pruning is a highly effective way of:
- controlling the size and neatness of the bush
- maximising flower production and encouraging strong growth
By decreasing the size of the rose, the plant has less eyes that require sap flow in spring. This results in stronger stem production and therefore more flowers.
During its life span, the rose will produce continuous water shoots (or basal shoots) from the bud union at the base of the plant, forming the beginning of new stems. Fresh rose stems claim most of the sap flow, producing long stems with large quality flowers.
Overtime the sap flow will gradually decrease and the stem will become exhausted. You will notice that old stems lose their vigour, producing short twiggy shoots, with smaller, fewer flowers and the bark turning grey before eventually dying off.
The procedure of pruning is to help accelerate this process, aiding the rose to produce higher quality flowers, foliage and stems. This is done by removing aged grey stems, allowing the plant to put all its energy into the new growth.
How to prune:
- When pruning always cut slightly above the growth eye (or growth bud) as this where new growth will begin to appear. Growth eyes occur where there is, or was, a leaf growing from the stem. Try to select a growth eye that is facing outwards.
- If in doubt of which stems to remove, always remove the oldest grey branch. The newer branches will produce stronger growth and more flowers.
- If plants have had black spot or mildew – or any other fungal disease – during the growing season, the fungal spores will stay in your garden. Be sure to collect all clippings after pruning and burn them. This will help stop the spread of disease around your garden.
By bush roses we are referring to floribunda, hybrid tea and modern shrub roses.
The process of pruning is not difficult. We have simplified it into the following points:
- Remove 2/3 of plant height.
- Remove any remaining foliage.
- Remove any dead wood or diseased wood, making a cut right to the base of the stem.
- Remove any spindly, untidy shoots to their base.
- Remove old branches that are not performing – leave the newest stems.
- To reduce crowding in the center of the plant, remove any branches that cross over others.
- Remove suckers. for more information.
There are exceptions to the above points, keep reading to find out more.
Heritage, Old Fashioned, Species Varieties
These require little to no pruning. Remove any old or dead wood. However, for a neater look, prune as per bush roses.
For roses that only flower in spring, winter pruning will reduce the number of flowers. For these roses, only remove the dead and very old twiggy wood. For best results, prune once the spring flowering is over. A very light trimming to keep the plant neat may be necessary, be sure to keep it light.
Firstly, we need to understand the difference between the main canes and the lateral canes
Main canes: are the support and structure of the rose, generally produced from the base of the plant. These stems do not produce many flowers.
Lateral canes: these canes grow from the main canes and are the stems that produce flowers.
It is important to remember that we do not want to prune the main canes, ONLY the lateral canes.
Climbing roses need to be trained to produce the desired effect. This is done by weaving or tying new canes horizontally to a support – a fence, wall, pillar, etc.
- Remove any dead wood or diseases, making the cut right to the base of the stem.
- Remove old stems that are unproductive. Look for the new canes that will replace the ones being removed.
- Trim back lateral growth leaving the side stems no longer than about 6-8 cm and with a minimum of three growth buds.
- On the new main canes, cut the tips down to the first side shoot.
- Remove suckers.
- Rearrange the remaining stems, tying them to a support. Aim for the main canes to lie horizontally along the support, as this will encourage more shoots to grow creating a thicker, bushier look. Roses do not grow down wards; therefore, do not bend them further then horizontal.
Ramblers rarely flower twice on the same stem. For this reason, it may be necessary to cut the stems that have recently flowered back to their base or to the next strong shoot. This is to be done immediately after flowering has finished. Be sure to train the new shoots to replace the stems that have been removed.
Ground covers need little to no pruning. Remove dead heads – these are the spent flowers left on the push – and light trimming to keep them tidy.
Standards are pruned in the same way as bush roses.
All standards need to be staked as they cannot support their own weight, snapping in strong winds. When pruning be sure to replace the ties, this will stop the tie becoming too tight around the stem which can reduce the sap flow, stunting the growth of the rose.
Weeping Standard Roses
Most weeping standards are ramblers, climbers or ground cover varieties.
Weepers perform their best when unpruned and therefore they require little to no pruning.
Remove dead wood and old twiggy stems after flowering. Dead heading and very light trimming to keep it tidy may also be necessary on some varieties.
What to do after pruning:
After completing pruning during winter it is best to spray roses with Lime Sulphur. This helps to eliminate fungal spores and eggs from pests, giving you a fresh start come spring. This is especially important for rose gardens that have trouble with black spot and mildew during the growing season.
Follow the instruction on the packaging and spray every stem on each rose, making sure to also spray the surrounding ground.
Note: this spray may defoliate the rose plant if used during the growing season, hence why we suggest spraying Lime Sulphur only after pruning in winter.
Seamungus is an organic soil conditioner and used for roses as a winter fertiliser. This helps your plants resist frost, pests and disease as well as conditioning the soil and encouraging root growth, giving them a head start for spring.
Applying a new layer of mulch. Mulch works as an insulator, protecting from temperature variations and helping to retain moisture in the soil, preventing damage to roots during hot weather and drought conditions. Garden beds that are well mulched will require less watering and weeding. Mulching your roses will also help to provide them with necessary nutrients as the matter begins to break down into the soil. for more information on mulching.
After pruning your roses give them a good deep soaking of water. Once pruned, this is a good time to start regularly watering your roses again. This will help them to break dormancy and produce flowers quicker into spring.
Each winter it is best to assess your potted roses and their performance. If they have performed poorly over the last year chances are they are pot bound, meaning they do not have enough room available in the pot for their roots. If this is the case re-potting them into a larger pot will do your plant wonders. After pruning is a great time to do this.
Overtime the potting mix will settle and you will notice the soil level sinks into the pot. Depending on how far it has sunk either top up the soil or remove the plant, add more potting mix to the base and replant the rose.
Remember to water the plant well after doing either of these tasks!
During the flowering season:
Roses often do not require pruning during the flowering or growing months. Throughout the season be sure to dead head and remove any die back as it occurs.
Dead heading is the process of removing spent flowers. Old flowers left on the bush will begin to turn into hips and seeds, taking up most of the plants energy. The removal of spent flowers encourages more blooms to grow, maximising flower production. Snap or cut off the flower where the first leaflets are found.
Die back is the blackening of the tip of the rose stem which then travels down toward the graft. The most common cause of die back is a lack of water. for more information on die back.
The perfect petunia! – Knowledgebase Question
I, too, am on a quest for the perfect petunia! Most do require deadheading. Not only does deadheading keep them attractive, it promotes a bushy growth habit and encourages lots of new flowers. Despite their high maintenance, I think both Multiflora and Grandifloras are the most beautiful of all the petunias. I suspect that’s what your neighbor is growing.
You’ll also find the ‘Wave’ series of petunias. The ‘Wave’ series created quite a stir when first introduced and keeps improving. ‘Wave’ petunias grow only 6″ tall but can spread to 4′. They make wonderful groundcovers and trailers for containers. Although Wave petunias don’t need deadheading, they do wear out in the hottest part of the summer and some pruning will revive them. There is also a ‘Tidal Wave’ series, which tends to stay a bit more upright.
Another you might consider is the ‘Supertuna’. The ‘Supertunia’ series is vegetatively propagated, meaning it is grown from cuttings, not seed. Supertunias are part of the Proven Winner series. Vigorous growers and bloomers, they require frequent feeding to stay at their peak. But if you feed them, they will bloom and bloom. Supertunias are also weather tolerant.
If you’re looking for a trailing type, ‘Cascadia’ and ‘Surfinia’ are 2 more popular types bred for their trailing habit, vivid colors and prolific flowering. You’ll find lots of interesting shading and veining with these petunias. They are also easy care, spreading to about eighteen inches. These petunias are best suited for hanging baskets and window boxes.
A final suggestion is a petunia look-alike. ‘Calibrachoa’ (Million Bells or Superbells) look like tiny petunias, but they are actually an entirely different species. However they may just suit your purpose in a hanging basket. The tiny flowers cover the foliage and Calibrachoa hybrids share the best traits of hybrid petunias: long blooming, no deadheading and weather tolerance.
If you absolutely do not want to have to deadhead, this might be the best choice for you. Hope this information is helpful.
Deadheading Flowers: Encouraging A Second Bloom In The Garden
Most annuals and many perennials will continue to bloom throughout the growing season if they are regularly deadheaded. Deadheading is the gardening term used for the removal of faded or dead flowers from plants. Deadheading is generally done both to maintain a plant’s appearance and to improve its overall performance.
Why You Should Be Deadheading Your Flowers
Deadheading is an important task to keep up with in the garden throughout the growing season. Most flowers lose their attraction as they fade, spoiling the overall appearance of a garden or individual plants. As flowers shed their petals and begin to form seed heads, energy is focused into the development of the seeds, rather than the flowers. Regular deadheading, however, channels the energy into the flowers, resulting in healthier plants and continual blooms. Snapping or cutting dead flower heads can enhance the flowering performance of many perennials.
If you’re like most gardeners, deadheading may feel like a tedious, never-ending garden chore, but the new blooms spawned from this task can make the extra effort well worth it.
Some of the more commonly grown plants that reward this effort with a second bloom are:
- Bleeding heart
- Shasta daisy
The second bloom will also be longer lasting.
How to Deadhead a Plant
Deadheading flowers is very simple. As plants fade out of bloom, pinch or cut off the flower stem below the spent flower and just above the first set of full, healthy leaves. Repeat with all the dead flowers on the plant.
Sometimes it may be easier to deadhead plants by shearing them back entirely. Shear away the top few inches of the plant, enough to remove the spent blossoms. Always check plants carefully to ensure that no flower buds are hiding amid the faded blooms before you shear the top of the plant. If you happen to find any new buds, cut the stem just above them.
Get in the habit of deadheading early and often. If you spend at least a short time in the garden each day, your deadheading task will be much easier. Start early, around late spring, while there are only a few plants with faded flowers. Repeat the process every couple of days and the chore of deadheading flowers will lessen each time. However, if you choose to wait until later in the season, like early fall, the dreaded task of deadheading will be rightfully overwhelming.
Nothing is more rewarding to a gardener than watching the garden come to life with beautiful blooms, and by practicing the task of deadheading throughout the season, nature will bless you with a second wave of blooms to enjoy even more.
- Make the plant look neater: Dying flowers tend to turn brown and either dry or mushy. This can detract from the overall look you’ve worked so hard to achieve in your garden.
- Encourage plants to set more flower buds: Plants flower to set seed. If their flowers are constantly being removed before they mature and go to seed, many plants, although not all, will simply set more. This will extend the length of the blooming season. Most annual flowers, such as petunias, zinnias, and marigolds, as well as many perennial plants, will continue to bloom throughout the growing season—if they are deadheaded. Rudbeckia and Echinacea are good examples of perennials that benefit from deadheading. They will repeat-bloom through the season if regularly deadheaded.
- Help plants conserve energy: Removing dead blooms allows the plant to direct its energy toward improving its general health. Perennial flowers, such as Astilbe and peonies, bloom only once per year, even with deadheading. However, cutting back the flower stalks allows all the plant’s energy to be put back into its roots and foliage, allowing it to regain any energy it lost to flowering and making for a generally hardier plant.
- Prevent seed formation: Some plants self-sow aggressively, and deadheading prevents them from forming seed in the first place. Plants such as bellflowers, chives, and garlic chives can quickly outgrow their space if allowed to self-sow. Of course, self-sowing can be a welcome attribute with desirable plants such as columbines and butterfly weed.
How To Know What Plants To Deadhead And When
Although it may still feel like winter in some parts of the country, springtime is nearly here. And for those of us with a green thumb, that means it’s time to do some spring cleaning in the garden.
Though you likely have many chores to tackle on your to-do list, don’t forget to deadhead your flowers. It not only improves the appearance of your plants, but makes them healthier as well.
What Is Deadheading, Exactly?
Although it may sound ominous (or like something related to the band Grateful Dead), deadheading basically means to remove faded or dead flower heads from plants. Doing so helps to divert the plant’s energy from the dying flowers to new flower heads, encouraging your plants to conserve their energy. As a result, you’ll enjoy healthier, hardier plants.
Deadheading may even extend the blooming period for perennials, and for plants like lavender that rebloom after pruning.
How Do You Deadhead A Plant?
To deadhead a flower, snip or pinch off the flower head. As long as you are only removing the flower stem above the first healthy leaf, the practice should not affect the rest of the plant.
For plants that produce clusters of small flowers, like geraniums, you may want to wait until the entire cluster is dying before shearing the whole plant back.
Flickr | burroblando
How Often Should You Deadhead Plants?
Most experts recommend that gardeners begin deadheading their flowers in the spring, at the first sign of a flower’s petals falling off. After that, ongoing maintenance throughout the fall growing period is recommended in order to keep your flowers blooming for as long as possible. Stop deadheading once the weather becomes cooler in order to give your plants an opportunity to reseed themselves.
While it can be hard work to keep a large garden pruned, for flower fanatics, deadheading is a labor of love.
Common Plants That Require Deadheading
Most annual plants, and many perennials, can benefit from deadheading. This includes plants like:
- Baby’s breaths
- Painted daisies
Flickr | Trinity
Low-Maintenance Plants That Don’t Need Deadheading
Gardeners who are short on time, or who find deadheading to be too much of a chore, may want to consider growing lower-maintenance plants, like these:
- New Guinea Impatiens