Dividing Perennials and Keeping Your Garden Young
Mature plants have likely begun appearing if you have already spent any number of years gardening. Your mature plants will soon be ready to be properly divided. From these divisions, you can take additional plants to fill the various empty spots that are located around your property.
Divided plants may also be removed from your area entirely and traded with any other friends you have that enjoy gardening as well. This is a good technique for obtaining new plants that don’t yet exist in your garden.
Consider dividing the plant before it is too late and the plant has become overgrown. There is no perfect time for dividing the plant, you must apply your own judgement for any given situation, but the usual time-frame is between 3 to 5 years of age. During this time, most plants will reach maturity and some may begin to become overcrowded. Dividing on a repetitive cycle is a great idea.
Most plants have root-systems that extend downward until they reach the dripline: this is where you should begin digging. If you choose to dig from the drip line, around the clump at angles using clean movements, you will divide a plant with most of its roots still in tact.
This allows for a clean, healthy transplant into any alternative environment. The only exception is when dividing larger plants or those that are much heavier. With these larger plants above the drip line, you must dig a trench first and then cut back into the center to separate multiple sections of the clump.
Plants have their own favorite seasons, but it’s generally best to perform your divisions during the spring months. During this particular season, the air is cooler than normal and the sun is still not out for quite as long. With cooler air, the soil is warmer during most of the day and the plants tend to stay low. Remember, this falls just before daffodil season and with proper care can result in a quick recovery period.
While your plants are undertaking division, but not yet moved to their new homes, keep them in moist, cool soil. The ideal conditions are met when the soil is at fifty-percent humidity throughout the day and the temperature remains at fifty-degrees Celsius.
Unfortunately, the plants may not get to experience this same excellent environment again in their lives, so let them enjoy it while they can. This also helps ensure that the plants live through the process and reach their new homes in a healthy condition.
If you pull up mature plants for division, then replace them with the appropriate amount of compost. New compost helps healthy plant growth continue prior to actually planting the new plants. It’s also important that you keep the area free of pests and uphold fertility standards. Once you have taken the next step and planted the new replacements, the plants will be at a disadvantage and the plant life will become more susceptible to damage.
These tips offer all of the help you will need when dividing your mature plants. Remember to keep your plants young and healthy because an ugly garden is a garden in trouble!