How to prune daisies for beautiful blooms. Discover the best time to prune your daisies and how to properly care for them afterwards.
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The Right Time of Year
Although you can prune your daisies at any time of year, the best time to prune them is in the late fall or early winter. This will help them to bloom beautifully in the spring.
Pruning time for daisies is actually quite late in the winter, after the plant has had a chance to go dormant. This gives the plant time to produce new buds that will flower in the spring. The best time to prune is usually February or early March. By then, the danger of severe frost is over, but the plant is still dormant.
Pruning daisies in early spring encourages bushier growth and more flowers. Start by cutting back one-third of the plant’s height. Then, remove any dead or spindly stems, cutting them back to the ground or to a healthy bud. Finally, thin out the plant so that there are 4 to 5 main stems.
The Right Tools
Pruning daisies is an important part of keeping them healthy and ensuring they produce beautiful blooms. You’ll need a sharp pair of pruning shears and a small, sharp knife. You’ll also need to know when to prune your daisies.
Garden shears, also called hand pruners (or in the UK, secateurs), are small, handheld scissors used for cutting relatively soft plants. They typically have short, somewhat curved blades, and are operated with one hand using a spring-loaded action.
If you’re serious about gardening, bypass pruners are a necessity. They allow you to cut stems up to 3/4-inch in diameter with clean, precise cuts that won’t damage the plant. Bypass pruners have two blades that pass by each other like scissors, and they’re ideal for cutting living tissue.
Anvil pruners have a single sharp blade that cuts against a flat surface on the body of the tool, similar to how a knife cuts against a cutting board. These are best for deadheading (removing spent blooms) because they can crush living tissue, which can damage the plant.
The Right Technique
Pruning daisies may seem like a daunting task, but with the right technique, it can be easy to achieve beautiful blooms. Start by evaluating the plant and removing any dead, diseased, or damaged leaves or stems. Then, cut back the remaining leaves and stems by about one-third to one-half. Be sure to make clean, sharp cuts just above a leaf node or bud.
Cut back the spent blooms
To keep your daisies looking their best and blooming continuously, you’ll need to do a little light pruning throughout the season. Cut back the spent blooms, or flower heads, down to the level of the foliage. This will encourage the plant to produce more flowers. You can use pruning shears or even just your fingers for this task.
Cut back the dead leaves
Start by cutting back the dead leaves and stems with a sharp pair of pruning shears. If the plant is very overgrown, you may need to cut back some of the healthy leaves and stems as well. Be careful not to cut too much, as this can damage the plant. When in doubt, err on the side of caution and only remove a little bit at a time.
Cut back the weak stems
To help your daisies look their best, it’s important to regularly deadhead them (remove the spent blooms). But you also need to prune them periodically to encourage new growth. The best time to prune daisies is in late winter or early spring, before they start actively growing.
When you prune, cut back the weak stems and any that are crossing over or rub against other stems. This will help increase air circulation and give the plant a more compact, bushy appearance. If your plant is looking leggy (long and thin), you can cut it back by half its height to encourage new growth.