New Zealnd Flax, if I chop them to ground level, will they grow back
Had this plant from a baby and planted it in the wrong place. It grows to high and blocks our front window. I therefore trim it down, however I have lots of dead leaves in the centre which are easily pulled out. I want to chop it to ground level. Will it grow back?
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
The only pruning one should ever give a New Zealand flax (phormium) is to remove leaves if they are battered or turning brown. When you do this, you should cut entire leaves to the ground, because cutting leaves partway down will give the plant a hacked, ugly profile.
It is normal for lower leaves to die eventually, and removing them makes the plant look fresh again. To remove leaves, you will need lopping shears, the long handles of which allow you to reach into the plant.
Phormiums grow at least as wide as tall, and often grow wider.
If you choose to move them or thin them, dig them in fall or spring when the soil is moist but not soggy. Have the new hole ready and leave as much soil as you can on the roots of the plants you are moving.