Click below to listen to my 2 min. Garden Bite radio show: Pinching, is it rude?
Only if you’re pinching someONE you ought not to! Oh, this is Garden Bite and we talk plants!
Pinching, pruning, deadheading are all a good things FOR THE MOST PART. I would caution you to quit pinching your Mums right now. If you don’t you won’t have any flowers coming.
Pinching your herbs is a great way to keep them growing bushier. You want the leaves more than the flowers. So pinch, prune or use scissors to cut back the flowers. Snip back to the next set of 2 leaves and they’ll form lateral or side shoots.
Take a look at the flowers on this peppermint. They could all be pinched off at the next set of 2 leaves. The reason I didn’t on this plant is that mint just grows crazy and I didn’t really need to.
However, with basil, chives, parsley, dill, any of the herbs are better off being pinched back before they get to the open flower stage. The leaves can become bitter as the energy goes to the flowers. Also, most herbs LOVE to be pinched!
Same goes for your indoor planted herbs!
A Garden Bite listener/blog reader question, what’s a biennial:
A biennial is a plant whose entire lifecycle takes 2 years to complete. The first year, it grows a low set of leaves, the next year, it flowers, sets seed and dies. The foxglove or digitalis is an example of a biennial that reseeds itself in our climate.
A perennial continues to live through our climate zone while an annual lasts just one season. Although there are plants that drop seed and you’ll find more next year. Cilantro is a good one for that.