End of Year Plant Maintenance

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by Thirdpete, Oct 22, 2006.

  1. Thirdpete

    Thirdpete LawnSite Member
    from Chicago
    Posts: 236

    What to do with daylillies, spiraea's, hostas, yukkas, etc. at the end of the year? Just cut them back and dispose of the waste?
     
  2. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,112

    Daylillies cut them down to the ground, same with most perennial plants that go dormant in winter, But if there are dormant buds, then you want to just cut them back to a good strong outward facing bud. You want to be sure they have died almost all the way back before cutting back if possible because they store up their energy to live next year from the last green they have at the end of the season.
    Spireas I remove any dead wood and cut them back to the last 6 or 8 dormant buds. Or I just deadhead them depending on how they look. Yukkas I have no idea. Yes you do want to dispose of the waste. Or you could just leave it there to look crappy all winter
    ( a joke lol)
     
  3. Kate Butler

    Kate Butler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 640

    Yuccas need only to have any dead lower leaves removed. If, in the Spring, there's any winterkill, then re-trim as necessary. And the biggest thing about removing the debris is (at least in this part of the country) to take away bugs' wintering-over places.

    Also, cut LITERALLY to the ground on herbaceous perennials. In the NorthCountry, perennial leaves and stems do one of two things if left unclipped in the Fall: they will become soft and slimy (yucky to clean up in the Spring) or they will become splintery and woody (painful to clean up in the Spring). Phlox stem splinters under the fingernails are REALLY unpleasant.
     
  4. Thirdpete

    Thirdpete LawnSite Member
    from Chicago
    Posts: 236

    Thanks for the quick responses.

    That was what I was figuring, just had to confirm it. Thanks for the input.
     
  5. Kate Butler

    Kate Butler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 640

    Y'know, I didn't think of it at the time, but where you live is on the outside edge of most yuccas' hardiness zones. It'd be a good idea to ask the client if they wrap it to protect it from wind. Or, spray some anti-transpirant on it instead.
     

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