Deadheading flowers is the process of removing spent flower blooms. It is
accomplished by snipping, pruning, pinching, cutting or using any other means
to remove the dead (or spent) bloom. Remove the dead flower, along with the
flower stem, where the flower stem meets the stem of the plant. It's good
for your plants in a number of ways.
Deadheading flowers has a lot of benefits. It has but one drawback. When
you remove the spent bloom, you are removing the seeds. Sometimes the seeds
fall to the ground to produce next year's flowers. Other times, gardeners
choose to collect them for later use.
Be a "Dead Header" and deadhead your plants regularly!
Why should gardeners deadhead flowers?
There are a couple of big reasons why you should deadhead spent blooms.
Deadheading promotes new flower growth. All things in nature have a built
in desire to reproduce offspring. Flower plants are no exception. Inside
of the flower, is where the seeds are produced to create the next generation
of plants. Once they have been produced, the plant has satisfied it's need
to reproduce. At that time, flower production stops.
By deadheading the blooms, you trick the plant into believing that it's
reproductive task is not yet accomplished. Often, the plant will then produce
another series of flowers. Pretty cool, huh!?!
Dead flowers lose their color, dry up, and in general, begin to look ugly.
So, reason number two to deadhead flowers is pretty obvious. Deadheading
makes plants look better, and overall spruces up the appearance of your flower
bed. Many gardeners take this as an opportunity to trim and reshape the plant,
into an attractive shape.
When Should I Deadhead my Flowers?
It is usually best to deadhead spent bloom as soon as the flower has died.
Some flowers, like Lilacs, need to be removed immediately after blooming,
or you risk trimming off next year's blooms.
Will all flowers produce another series of blooms, if I deadhead them?
No, not all. Roses will, Lilacs won't. Mums will, flowering bulbs won't.
Do you know if the flowers in your flower bed will re-bloom if you deadhead
them? When in doubt, we recommend you give it a try. At the very least, you
will improve the appearance of the plant.