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cutting back perennials

Posted by rowdysmom (My Page) on
Mon, Dec 30, 13 at 14:06

Hi All, I live in Austin and my deciduous perennials look really bad (I just put in new beds in the fall, so this is my first winter for perennials). I'm talking lantana, turks cap, Mexican oregano, etc etc (lots of perennials). When I inquired at the nursery about when to cut them back, they said not till between Feb. 1-14. But over the weekend on the radio gardening shows, the hosts said it was fine to cut them back now. What advice do you sage gardeners have for me?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: cutting back perennials

I wait until February to cut mine back ..........if you cut them back now, they could re-sprout on warm days and then be killed back again when the next freeze comes. I know they don't look very attractive, but I have learned to live with it as another part of winter I don't like.

RE: cutting back perennials

Like Carrie said; however, a few things in prominent places that look really raggidy like Esperanza in the front yard I cut back if the stems are totally dead. Cutting back perennials with green stems such as roses will induce them to sprout new foliage too early. Plants with soft dead foliage I tidy up by folding it around and mashing it down which serves as a mulch to protect the roots from further low temperatures.

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