I've added guara lindheimeri (whirling butterflies) to my garden this year.
I've read that I should deadhead to promote continued flowering, but I'm
unsure how to do this. Do I cut the whole stem down?
I have the same problem with my rocket snapdragons. (or any of the
snapdragons, for that matter) Do I just remove the seed pods or cut the
whole stem? They continue to produce more flowers at the tip as they grow,
so I'm always hesitant to cut the whole stem. Will it grow new ones?
Any advice is appreciated!
Yes, you cut the entire stems down to where the plant's foliage is. I usually
gather handfuls of the stems and just cut them off. They are probably full of
aphids (if you are organic and don't use pesticides). I love the aphids because
at any given time I have thousands of ladybeetle's at all stages of development
in my garden. If you wish, you can do a little bit of side dressing to the
plants after you deadhead to encourage new blooms. They will bloom in
approximately a month after you do this.
Snapdragons are cool season annuals. They will either go dormant for the summer
or melt away altogether. Where we live, the snaps are already melted and gone.
However, if you can tolerate their rangy look till the seed pods ripen, they
will more than likely return as soon as the weather cools off (provided you have
ample moisture to germinate the seeds). Many times the seeds do not come true
and you may get another color than the one you planted.
Thanks for the info, Identity, on the guara. As for the snapdragons, I
DID specifically mention Rocket, and that does usually just bloom 1x
each year, but I also have other, smaller varieties, like 'Liberty' and
the dwarf varieties that bloom can pretty much all summer if properly
deadheaded here in Kentucky, zone 6A. I just don't know whether to
pinch them back at the stems, or remove the seed pods. I've had
limited success with the dwarfs by pinching them. But the taller ones?
Deadheading anything is the removal of the spent flower. On plants which have
stalks I remove the entire stem where the flower emerged. An example of this is
an iris. When I dead head an iris I remove the entire stem of the flower as low
as I can, closest to the foliage.
On 22 May 2005 11:34:22 -0700, firstname.lastname@example.org opined:
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