Cut the plant back to its woody base in late winter to early spring with hand pruners. Deadhead the tall blooms as they fade, cutting off the flower spike to a few leaves past where the green foliage starts.
Cut back flowers after the last wave of blooms in late fall to early winter to avoid the plant setting seed. Warning Continual cutting back to prompt waves of bloom can “exhaust” the plant, making it die out after only a few years.
Bring nature indoors with houseplants that will transform your home into a green haven to help you to relax, distress... I take cuttings off the perennial wallflowers, and they flower the following year.
I realize that my Wallflower 'Mavis Bowles' is on its way out and I need to take cuttings. A GC member Blackthorn very kindly sent me a cutting of E.' Bowles Mauve' a year ago.
And this site gives some instructions on taking cuttings of it. If you don't have a heated propagator, just stick the cutting in a pot in a poly bag.
Remember it won't have any roots for the first two weeks, so it can use little or no water from the soil at the start, and excess wet could make it rot. I still find you get a lot of confliction advice, and I really, really hate those sites that quote your search criteria and then don't offer anything at all or say you have to pay to go any further.
The use of the “+” key in your search criteria also helps a lot, as does putting something in quote marks (these last two suggestions come courtesy of my 12-year-old god-daughter who's forgotten more about computers than I'll ever learn! 3 in total, and they are on my kitchen window sill awaiting to be reviewed.
Hope they are successful though, as seemed to have promised plants to about 9 different people! After nearly a year of planning, my garden is starting to head in a direction I want.
I bought this wallflower a couple of months ago and potted it up into a container, sitting in full sun against a warm brick wall. I cut the worst of the legginess back a couple of weeks ago, but nothing much new seems to be happening.
It was potted up into good quality compost, so I didn't think it would need feeding. Just a quick update OK a month has roughly passed and I have transferred my cuttings into a bigger pot.
To be honest the failure is probably my fault as I overwatered them, didn't use gritty compost and left then in strong sunlight for the first week until i re-read the posts on this forum. 2) I have placed the new plants :D, in doors in a warm window still with good sunlight and not in my cheap plastic greenhouse.
2) Once it has got a reasonable amount of root, I don't think you have to worry at this time of year about hardening off. But if you are in any doubt, you could always give it some protection in your plastic greenhouse.
Just a suggestion Doodad, (and forgive me if I'm stating the bleeding' obvious) but when you take cuttings I know it can be very tempting to see how they're getting on, but through bitter experience, I've learned that the best thing to do is to leave them in their original pot until you can just see tiny white roots visible when you hold the pot up and look underneath. I didn't know you had to wait for the roots to show out the pot, as I just left it a month, presuming that was the rule- I didn't know I had to look for something.
Can get massive root balls after only 10 days but, I understand, that some hardwood cuttings can take the best part of a year. I bought this wallflower a couple of months ago and potted it up into a container, sitting in full sun against a warm brick wall.
I cut the worst of the legginess back a couple of weeks ago, but nothing much new seems to be happening. It was potted up into good quality compost, so I didn't think it would need feeding.
Have just taken cuttings and found this site when I googled “how to grow wallflower cuttings ! The person who gave me the plant planted one for herself in good soli, and it has done very badly. Some of these perennials such as Verbena bonariensis and Aquila naturally die after a few years even when grown in the correct soil conditions, but fortunately many of them self-seed.
Others such as pension and Elysium will sometimes live a little longer, but they tend to weaken and get leggy after a few years and flowering will decline. Other types can be propagated by taking short cuttings at this time of the year and rooted on in pots or trays.
Some perennials benefit largely from regular pruning during the summer growing season, but the most important cleanups are in the fall and the spring. A host of perennials responds best to a tidy spring-cleaning and are seemingly rejuvenated from the practice.
A healthy guide to what to cut back in the spring and in the fall follows here, so bookmark this page and revisit it when you need to reference it! Plants that produce a bazillion seeds are eager to multiply in your garden without the courtesy of an invitation.
Leaving certain seed heads attached for too long increases your odds of finding new patches of your favorite self-seeding plants. Instead, “basal growth” refers to the leaves, shoots, and stems that start growing from the very base of the plant.
Be prepared with something that’s durable enough to carry and transport the cutback perennial foliage, because it will add up quickly! A contestant in the running for “Most Possible Mildew on a Perennial” (an award that no one wants to win) is bee balm, aka horse mint.
Photo by Matt SWAK. If you like a tidy garden, cut back the flower stalks in late fall. A favorite meal of swallowtail caterpillars, bronze fennel is becoming an increasingly popular addition to gardens.
More modest cuts of about half the height of the plant during the fall are recommended if cat mint is a foundation of your perennial border, coupled with regular summer pruning. The flowers of columbine remind me of futuristic spaceships, and that’s cool… But their ceaseless self-seeding is not so cool in contained areas.
Photo by Matt SWAK. Pruning columbine flowers and seedpods back in the fall helps to prevent self-seeding. If you leave the foliage on these plants to overwinter, they’ll offer you an unattractive but free mulch.
If you want to plan ahead for an easier springtime, cut back the foliage of the day lily in the fall to save yourself a headache in the future. You can leave the fall-blooming anemone standing over the winter, but if the foliage and stems turn black after frosts they should be cut to the ground.
Another victim of “too much fungus!” the peony is a gorgeous bloomer that leaves an often unpleasant heap of fall foliage. Woody Sylvia should be cut back regularly throughout the season by removing spent flowers, and does best when it receives a heavy fall pruning, reducing the size of the plant by about half.
A beautiful plant to have in any garden, veronica is an easygoing perennial that requires minimal care. After the first hard frost, cut veronica (aka speedwell or gypsy weed) back to a few inches above the ground.
A favorite and necessary addition to any meadow-like border, yarrow offers a unique flower shape and some interesting foliage. Photo by Matt SWAK. These respond very well to fall pruning, cutting the plant back to the basal leaves.
Another icon of meadows and roadsides in the country, aster is a tough plant that wants to be left alone over the winter. The old foliage helps protect the plant from winter damage and requires minimal cleanup in the spring.
An icon in the garden, butterfly bushes offer a wild growth habit highlighted with brightly colored conical flowers. Photo by Matt SWAK. Leave these standing over the winter, and watch for the first signs of new growth popping out before cutting this vigorous plant back to a height of about one foot in the spring.
Although there are a tremendous variety of coneflowers out there, most of these hybrids seem to revert or reseed back to their true purple color. That’s no problem, because these long-lasting flowers are vital food sources for various types of wildlife over the winter months.
Leave them standing and enjoy their snow-capped flower heads being pecked apart by eager birds in need of a meal. Coral bells are a great companion to many perennial plants and can even stand on their own in the interest department.
Leave the foliage intact on coral bells to guarantee an extra level of protection from the cold. Montauk daisies Montauk daisies (Nipponanthemum nihonium), which generally open later in the year, should be treated more like a woody shrub than a perennial.
Shasta daisies Shasta daisies (Leucanthemum × super bum), on the other hand, respond better to being left alone over the winter, and then having last year’s growth removed in early spring. These don’t produce much in the way of foliage or mess, and will only require a quick and light cleanup in the spring.
Lovely flowers on spindly growth are an attractive element in the garden, but Laura is hardly a long-lived perennial. Photo © Anne Christie Most of these have difficulty deflowering, or simply won’t, so leaving the seed heads attached during the early stages of the cold season allows the seeds to disperse and replenish the plant next year.
I’ve dug them up and divided them in July, then sipped a cool mojito and admired their blooms in August. Lucky for us, Joey weed is also an eager self-seeder, and offers lovely foliage that is beloved by local wildlife.
Like a handful of other perennials on this list, lavender is more sensitive to soggy soil than it is to the winter cold. To ensure that this fragrant staple in that sunny corner of your yard makes it back next year, wait to prune it until after the last hard frost, to protect new growth that is particularly sensitive to the cold.
I have a lot of experience planting lumbago, but that’s because it has a difficult time making it through the winters, and because it seems to disappear in the spring! The only trick I’ve found to knowing exactly where my lumbago will appear again is to leave the old foliage attached throughout the winter.
The softer-stemmed alias that thrive in warmer climates prefer to be cut back in the spring, because their new growth is sensitive to cold. This upbringing keeps him permanently affixed to the outdoors where most of his personal time is invested in gardening, bird watching, and hiking.
He presently resides in Philadelphia and works under the sun as a landscaper and gardener, and by moonlight as a writer. An incessant questioning of “Why?” affords him countless opportunities to ponder the (in)significance of the great and the small.