Dividing Perennials


When gardeners select perennials they look forward to a landscape full of mature and vigorous plants. Healthy perennials that are three and four years old are the pride of any plant enthusiast, however a single season can be the difference between a thriving, established plant bed and an overcrowded, lackluster plant bed.


Dividing your favorite plants and flowers once they have matured is an easy way to help them maintain their youthful vigor and beauty.


When to Divide?

Many gardeners wait too long to divide their perennials, you should divide your plants in the early spring and fall. Do not divide them if they have flowers or when they are almost ready to flower, but divide your perennials after flowering has stopped. Resist the urge to disrupt the spring performers that are filling your garden with blooms, you can divide them in the fall.


What Plants to Divide?

Take your cue from the plants!

  • Do the plants look crowded?
  • Does the center of the perennial seem woody or dry?
  • Are the flowers smaller or less prolific this season?

If you answered yes to any of these three questions, it would be a good idea to divide your plants.


How to Divide?

Carefully dig around the primary root ball of the plant and remove it completely. You should work quickly and out of direct sunlight to protect the exposed roots and to minimize the stress to the plant. Depending on the type of plant, it may naturally separate into clumps or you might have to use a knife or spade to divide the plant into sections. In either case, be sure to remove all unhealthy parts of the plant, especially woody centers.


Tough Love

Do not worry about being too hard on a plant that has made itself at home in your perennial plant bed. As long as each division has several good roots and some healthy foliage, the plant should continue to survive after division. While the plant is out of the plant bed, take the opportunity to adjust the soil. Replant one of the divisions where the larger plant used to be and water the divided plants very well for the next few days. As the roots begin to re-establish, your plants will perk up and thrive once again.


More Plants More Enjoyment

Dividing perennials can reward you with healthier, more vigorous plant beds that have your favorite perennial varieties. It also allows you to have more of your favorite plants to add to other parts of your garden.



- First Published By www.provenwinners.com

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