Flower Gardening

How Far to Cut Back Perennial Plants in Fall?

joshay57 added on November 7, 2016 | Answered

How far to cut back my astilbes, hostas, daylilies, coneflowers, black eyed susans and gladiolas when cleaning up my garden for the winter in Michigan?

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on November 7, 2016

Hostas, daylilies, gladiolas, coneflowers, and black eyed susans can be cut back in fall a few inches above the ground after the foliage dies.

Astilbes can be cleaned up in spring or in fall after the foliage has died. If cutting them in fall, cut about 3 inches off the ground to avoid damaging next year's buds.

Coneflower foliage should be left until spring to protect the roots, but seed heads should be removed if you don't want them to reseed.

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