Ever wonder what to do with your overgrown perennials?Well…divide them!This is the time of year to divide plants that have either outgrown their space, or are developing a dead patch in the center.Many of the familiar garden perennials are prime candidates for this type of simple propagation.It takes a minimal amount of tools, just a little bit of forethought and preparation.

Plants that have fibrous, rhizomatous roots, and plants that form clumps or crowns, are typically agreeable to being split up this way (Step 1).Dig up the clump, and tease it gently with your fingers to help locate the sections to be divided up (Step 2). You can rinse the roots with water to additionally free up the roots.If you can pull the pieces free with your hand, go for it (Step 3).

*Image borrowed from Plant & Soil Sciences eLibrary website

Alternatively, a sharp knife, or hori knife, as well as pruners or a long nose shovel, are all good candidates for sectioning up plants.Remove pieces that are at least 4 inches across, with some good roots. Trim excess roots and excess leaves to ensure the plant invests the energy in to growing strong roots (Steps 4 and 5). Plant in soil and water in the new plants to ensure maximum soil/root contact (Step 6). Keep moist for the next couple weeks while the plants recover. This is a great way to keep up the vigor of many choice plants, as well as increasing your stock.And of course, it’s always nice to share your bounty with your friends.

Kruckeberg Botanic Garden Propagation Workshops

Did you miss out on the first class in the Propagation Workshop Series? There are three more to come. Read about them and register here: www.kruckeberg.org/events-tours/