Deadheading tips: The six types of garden plant that need pruning in summer

Gardening: Expert demonstrates how to deadhead flowers

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Deadheading is incredibly important for the upkeep of your overall garden, as well as individual plants. It not only makes your flowers look nicer, but it helps them to continue growing strongly for a fuller bloom later in the year.

Deadheading describes removing flowers from plants that have started to fade, or have already died.

Pruning your dead flowers helps the plant to direct its energy into areas that could make use of the nutrients.

If you have plants in your garden that tend to spread out with plenty of flowers, you’ll need to deadhead them to stop debris littering your lawn.

Every gardener should aim to get rid of the dead petals on the plants as soon as they start to look scruffy.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) said: “[Deadheading] is done to keep plants looking attractive and encourage more blooms, whether in beds and border, containers or hanging baskets.

“Most flowers lose their attraction as they fade, spoiling the overall appearance of beds, borders and containers, and are best removed.

“Deadheading directs energy into stronger growth and more flowers.

“Once the flowers are pollinated; seed heads, pods or capsules form at the expense of further growth and flower development.”

Plants that need regular deadheading

Not every plant needs deadheading, but there’s still six key types of plant that need regular pruning.

Bedding plants are the most broadly grouped plants that need deadheading.

That includes anything growing in beds, containers, or hanging baskets.

Bedding plants typically include garden flowers, and should be easily removed without secateurs.

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Plants that need regular deadheading include:

  • Bedding plants
  • Geraniums
  • Roses
  • Shrubs
  • Climbers
  • Bulbs

How to deadhead plants

The easiest way to remove dead flowers is to simply pinch the faded blooms with your finger and thumb.

Remove the flower from the stalk to make sure your plant looks tidy, and so its energy isn’t wasted.

If you’d rather not get your hands dirty, secateurs are a handy tool for gardeners.

Secateurs, scissors, or a knife are all particularly helpful when deadheading plants with tough or stringy stems, said the RHS.

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