How do you get useful cuts from bachelor buttons?

thinman(Z5 MI)July 14, 2008

I'm still pretty much a beginner at this and I'd like to know the best way to cut bachelor buttons. If I cut them low to get a good stem length, I get a few unopened buds with each bloom, and they mostly seem to be longer than the bloom itself.

I could trim the buds off, but that takes quite a bit of time for each small bloom that I'll get. Do any of you just leave the buds on and use them in bouquets like that? I have a few sitting in water now to see if the buds will open and how long it takes.

I'm in the same situation with cosmos, to a lesser degree.

I'm sure you're all super busy right now, but if someone could find the time to help me with this, I would really appreciate it.

ThinMan

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bfff_tx(z8b TX)

ThinMan
You're referring to Cornflowers, right?
What I do is pinch every second plant, so they'll bush out. On the ones I don't pinch I cut the main flower stem, strip side stems, the plants will branch. But the first flower should be taller than the lower laterals. If you try cutting those secondary laterals off the main stem, you'll end some with skimpy flowers on real skinny stems. Hopefully by the time you've cut all the main stems on the plants you didn't pinch, the other plants are producing multiple good useable stems. When you're done with them, the original plants you cut the main stem from should have branched and provide more stems.
Also not being able to see the current growth/condition of your plants, doesn't help one to answer. Experiment and see what happens.
Cheers Kim
Billabong Fresh Flower Farm

    Bookmark   July 14, 2008 at 1:59PM
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thinman(Z5 MI)

Kim, thank you very much for your speedy answer. Yep, I'm talking about cornflowers, centaurea cyanus. As you can see below, I won't be able to use your advice on my first planting, but I have two more in the ground and I'll give your method a try on those.

You are very kind to share your knowledge.

Appreciatively,
ThinMan

    Bookmark   July 14, 2008 at 3:43PM
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teresa_b(z6 MO)

Good question Thinman and thank you, Kim. I have one quick question, At what height do you pinch the main stem of your cornflowers?

Teresa

    Bookmark   July 19, 2008 at 10:18AM
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bfff_tx(z8b TX)

Teresa
When the plant starts to form it's first main flower stem. Cut if off but not to the ground.
Cheers Kim

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 11:31AM
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