Should you remove wilted flowers from your ornamental garden?

The removal of faded flowers is essential for many plants and we must admit that it is better to do so with metronome regularity to preserve the beauty of your ornamental garden. It is essential to highlight the incredible palette of colors and shapes of flowers in full bloom. Beds, flowerbeds, rockeries but also pots, planters, window boxes and tubs of all kinds where faded flowers pile up are frankly not glamorous. If you are sorely lacking in time, however, you can grow some self-cleaning flowering plants or very long flowering plants. Here is everything you need to know for a colorful garden, resplendent, in other words without faded flowers.

Why remove faded flowers in the ornamental garden?

Arming yourself with scissors or pruning shears as regularly as possible in order to eliminate faded flowers as you go is a importance capital for various reasons, namely:

  • Preserve the highly aesthetic asset of its vegetated space whether it is the ornamental garden, the balcony or the terrace.
  • Preserve plant vigour: faded flowers that go to seed exhaust the plant because it requires a lot of energy.
  • Helps to fight against spontaneous sowing since it avoids bolting, which is important when growing flowering plants which can quickly prove to be very invasive.
  • Promotes the production of new flowers: the plant blooms more abundantly and the flowering period also lasts longer.
  • Allows the plant to produce beautiful foliage after the flowering period.
  • Protects the health of plants: faded flowers that are not removed end up rotting and the rot risks spreading throughout the plant.
  • Offers the possibility of creating sumptuous dry bouquets, provided you cultivate species that lend themselves to this art (Peony, Gypsophila, Rose, Lavender, Cotton, Dahlia, etc.).

The beauty of a flowering plant is not eternal since after a few days to a few weeks the flowers fade. Once they have been fertilized, they give way to fruits which, depending on the case, contain seeds or lack it. Except if you want to recover the seed in anticipation of the next sowing, it is therefore better cut the flowers as soon as they fade to make the plant more vigorous.

Be careful however, there are plant species for which the removal of the inflorescences is not done as soon as they are faded. Thus, the flowers of the Hortensia hydrangea are not to be removed only at the end of winterthose of Camélia not before the month of June.

Annual plants in the ornamental garden: do not remove all the faded flowers

With regard to annuals, it is important to allow them to reseed naturally or to recover some of their seeds in order to sow them in the desired location. In this category, examples abound. Among other things, there are:

  • Hollyhock,
  • Ipomee rolling,
  • Poppy,
  • Scaevola
  • California poppy,
  • Nasturtium,
  • marigold,
  • Belle de nuit (annual in harsh climates while in mild climates it is perennial),
  • Sweet Pea,
  • Worry,
  • Lin,
  • Nigella from Damascus…

So that the aesthetics of the ornamental garden does not have to suffer, only a few faded flowers are kept on the selected plants and the others are removed. They will be quickly hidden by the new flowers which will soon bloom.

To avoid having to remove faded flowers in the ornamental garden: grow self-cleaning or long-flowering plants

If we get used to it, remove faded flowers is a gesture that very quickly becomes completely natural, so much so that one does it even without thinking about it each time you pass in front of a plant whose flowers have withered. The gardener should therefore not take this essential task for a chore. Better to do this cleaning with pleasure because if you grow a lot of plants in the ornamental garden, it must be done almost daily.

Refractory people who feel a pang of anxiety at the idea of ​​having to tackle even the most basic gardening work may still not want to do without flowers in the ornamental garden. They are likely to experience great enthusiasm for self-cleaning flowering plants.

These are species that do not need to be cared for in order to bloom abundantly and for a long time. Their flowers wither, of course, like the others, but instead of staying on the stalk, they detach, fall to the ground or are blown away. Why would they remain in place since it is a question of sterile flowers. Nature is well done by allowing faded flowers (which will therefore not bear fruit or seeds) to disappear spontaneously to make way for new flowers and so on…

In this category of so-called self-cleaning plants we find, for example, the perennial geraniumthe Bégonia ‘Dragon Win’the Petuniathe different varieties of Calibrachoaeven some shrubs of which the best example is theAnisodontia capable of flowering at least 9 to 10 months a year and even of always having flowers, throughout the seasons, for several years. It just needs to like where it was planted. Finally, some roses are also said to be self-cleaning. You can spot them by this carpet of petals that thickens over time…

Ultra florifèresthese plants ideal for the ornamental garden and the terrace or balcony finally clean themselves (or almost) as they wither, the new flowers succeeding one another relentlessly. It is still necessary to carry out an annual pruning for certain so-called self-cleaning plants such as roses for example.

Finally, to avoid having to remove faded flowers too often without depriving yourself of a garden adorned with many varieties of flowering plants, do not hesitate to choose matricaria ‘Sissinghurst White’ and other species and varieties with very long blooms because they require much less maintenance than those whose flowers are very short-lived.

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