Pruning Garlic Chives

rayama(7b Birmingham, Al)October 30, 2006

I read somewhere that it was good to cut down your garlic chives ever so often. This is a large variet that somewhat resembles monkey grass in size. I trimmed mine down really, there's probably not more than 3 inches of green left. Was this a bad idea?

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nancy4321(z7b SC)

I don't think that was a bad idea. I have garlic chives in the front of a perennial flower/herb bed. They have really spread. They have rhizomes like tiny iris plants. I have been trying to cut off the seed heads to keep mine from spreading so much. They are hard to pull out. Mine are as tall as monkey grass but not as thick.


    Bookmark   November 1, 2006 at 8:33PM
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I have found them to be very invasive - taking over half of my culinary herb garden in 5 yrs. I dug most of them out 2 yrs. back, and they are coming up in great numbers again. I clipped off all seed heads before ripe this year, but that won't put a dent in the number. I must begin lifting all the little ones and digging out large clumps to take to a burn pile! I still like them, but wish they weren't so full of life in our gardens. Thank goodness they have such pretty flowers, or they'd be outta here:)

    Bookmark   November 1, 2006 at 10:00PM
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no, it wasn't a bad idea, but it may not do much good either.

In general chives benefit from drastic pruning and division every 2-3 years, but a simple hair cut doesn't do much.

To keep chives at their optimum you need to take the large clump and religiously follow the mandatory 10 steps with it:

1: Jump up and down on it, tramping it under foot.
2: Spit on it
3: Curse at it with the nastiest words you can bring yourself to utter.
4: Dig it all up and divide the clumps into sections you can toss with one hand.
5. Select one such clump per planting you want.
6: Whip the clump against a wall several times.
7: Cut all the greenery off as close to soil level as you wish.
8: Toss what remains onto the top of the area you wish it to grow.
9: Stomp on it to make good contact with the soil.
10: Leave it alone and it will grow and do well.

Ignore the mandatory 10 steps at your peril ;-)

    Bookmark   November 5, 2006 at 11:01PM
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