Gardening

Cut daffodil, tulip and hyacinth flower stalks after blooming

Most of our daffodils, tulips and hyacinths are done blooming for the season. That doesn’t mean that we can forget about them. There’s still some work left to be done that will improve our chances for getting blossoms next year.

Right now the plants are beginning  to form seed pods at the end of the flower stalks — where the old flower is attached. This is normal and is what happens when the plants are left to fend for themselves.

Each flower stalk produces a seed pod.

Each flower stalk produces a seed pod.

The problem with seed pods is they take too much energy to grow and we don’t need seeds to grow tulips, hyacinths or daffodils. To conserve that wasted energy, we need to remove those flower stalks as soon as possible after the flowers have faded.

I try to cut the flower stalks as close to the base of the plant as I can, being careful not to cut off the leaves. Plants need their leaves to produce energy for growth, reproduction and other plant functions.

Since I don’t plant as many bulbs now as I did in past years, this job for me is not as demanding as it used to be. This year I only have a few hundred stalks to cut.

Bob Dluzen
As a result of being a gardener for more than 40 years, 30 of those as a professional, Bob's gardening has become an integral part of his life. "It's the ever-changing seasons and the wide variety of plants and gardens that keeps me intrigued," he says. Bob lives and gardens in rural Monroe County.