Gardening: Expert demonstrates how to deadhead flowers
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For those who know how to grow daylilies they will understand that these plants typically require very little care to allow them to thrive. Despite thriving best in full sun, these plants will also grow well in part shade, in soil, or in pots equally. There is even no set answer for when to plant daylilies as these flowers can establish themselves throughout the year. Pruning these perennials, then, is yet another added but not totally necessary step to help foster the most flowers in your garden.
Gardening experts have shared whether gardeners should cut back daylilies in autumn and if so, how to go about it. Rachel Crow, Garden Editor for Homes & Gardens said: “You can certainly cut your daylilies in mid to late autumn, but it is not necessary for a perfect plant.”
Unlike pruning hydrangeas, daylilies are hardy plants that benefit more from being deadheaded than completely cut back at the end of their growing season, making them a much lower maintenance plant.
Rachel continued: “Cutting back daylilies is more a garden idea, a clean up a task that will help to prevent a build-up of fallen debris in your flower beds. This helps to reduce shelter or food for pests.”
For those who do choose to cut daylilies back in autumn, start pruning daily and deadheading your plant as the flowers brown, dry up, and die away. If you want to cut the plant back entirely, wait until the first hard frost of the year before cutting back leaves.
Cutting back daylilies can be done to help the plant grow more efficiently in the following spring. This is thought to provide gardeners with more bright blooms in the spring and summer.
Gardening gurus at Plant Addicts explained: “Cutting back daylilies will keep the plant healthy and produce flowers year after year. Spent flowers and stems can be removed during the growing season to promote more blooms.
“Keeping with their low-maintenance sensibilities, daylilies do not require much pruning, and generally, just cleaning the plant up to remove spent growth once a year is enough.”
The main benefit of cutting back daylilies is to tidy up the garden and make the plants look nicer or control their size or shape a little.
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The time to prune daylilies varies by the variety, according to the experts, but most of the flowers on a daylily only bloom for a single day.
They explained: “The plant will generally bloom for about a month to a month and a half, with new flowers opening up each day. Spent or dead flowers typically fall off naturally, but any that remain on the plant can be removed.
“Removing dead flowers or deadheading the plant will help promote new blooms. Daylilies only need to be cut back once a year, but there are only two times when it is okay to prune the plants.
“The best time of the year to cut back daylilies is in the spring or autumn. It comes down to your preference and what is easier and more convenient for you.”
Cutting back daylilies in autumn is much like deadheading roses as gardeners should cut the flower stalk off of the plant as the blossoms fade.
Rachel advised: “When pruning and deadheading, always make sure to use clean shears to prevent the spread of disease around your backyard ideas.
“Whether you want to remove the stems is down to personal choice. If you do not want your plant to produce seeds, trim the stalk down, leaving three to four inches above the ground to prevent inviting pests and disease.”
Leaving the plant to produce seeds can be great for those who know how to collect and store seeds from their garden plants, however, the seed-producing process can drain energy from the plant that it may need to grow abundant blooms the following year.
The gardening expert warned: “Leave the leaves alone when pruning your daylilies. Your plant needs the foliage intact in order to photosynthesise and build up roots and strengthen the plants to survive the winter.”
When pruning plants, always remove cut-off sections from your waste bins or compost to prevent mould, disease, and pests in the garden.
Although daylilies require very little care, it is a good idea to give your daylilies a final round of fertiliser after the plant has finished blooming and before gardeners decide to cut their plant back for the winter. This will help to give the plant the best chance of blooming the following year.
In autumn gardeners should also think about preparing their daylilies for winter when the plants enter a dormant phase as the flowers die back and the plant begins to store energy for the following year’s bloom.
Pruning the plant once the flowers have died back will both tidy up the garden as well as help the plant prepare for the following season. Mulching daylilies will also help to control weeds and the effects of winter frosts.
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