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When perrenials such as lupins and foxgloves finish flowering should one cut them back as they do not look very attractive without their flowers. Thank you Sally



I do not cut back if you want mother nature to look after you but if you do you get no seeds for next year. The optimum time to sow seed is as it matures on the plant in mid to late summer, before the end of August. A single seed capsule will provide hundreds of seeds, a few of which can be sown in ordinary seed compost, in containers, and placed somewhere cool and moist. The seedlings will produce large, early flowering plants for next summer. If you're relying on nature to do the work for you in borders, thin out the seedlings on the ground to enable them to reach a decent size. In a wild garden, don't intervene; higgledy-piggledy is fine.

Problem solver
Powdery mildew can be a problem, but foxgloves are remarkably resilient and don't require any pampering.

13 Jul, 2008


Lupins should have their flower spikes cut off as they can sometimes produce a second flush of flowers, and they won't if they think they have finished for the year by producing seed pods! I leave Foxglove seed pods on until they have turned brown, as with luck, they might produce seedlings.

13 Jul, 2008


I also cut my lupins and poppies back after the first flowers as that gives another set of flowers later (my lupins are now having the second flowering) then I can let the second set go to seed and collect them in autumn ....this way it might not be completely as nature had meant it to be but it looks nice and I get the best of both worlds :O)

14 Jul, 2008

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