How to Dead Head

by Daisy

Pansies are such a welcome sight in thirty degree weather. And I would have a lot more blooms than this, if I’d kept up with my dead-heading.

Dead-heading is just a fun term for removing fading blooms, so others can come in. Why does this work? It’s not just because flowers are vain and want to look fancy. (Which they are, you know.) Flowers eventually become seed pods–and for a plant, that’s what that color show is all about.

Making babies. Tacky.

So, if you nip off the flowers before they make seeds, the plant has to start all over again…with a whole new set of flowers.

Good for us. Hard work for them. But my flowers seem to enjoy the competition.

1. Find a spent bloom and grab it down the stem where if joins the…um…stem. (I don’t know the correct terminology, so I’ll just sing you a song to make up for my deficiency. The lil’ stems connected to the (clap) bigger stem.)

3. Pinch or snip (or sometimes yank, but only after the plant is really established or you’ll pull up the whole plant…and that would be a bummer.)


Hey, let’s do a makeover! Here we have one of Ivory’s many neglected pansy groupings:

Say something nice to her. NO one likes a hairdresser who looks down on you for being scraggly.

Also, we don’t like to say ‘problem areas’ in my garden, we say ‘beautification opportunities.’ So, below you see her ‘before’ picture with just one or two minor beautification opportunities circled.

Oh my.

But, after her treatment:

No more shame. No more drooping, deadness, or weeds.

Now, get out there Miss Pansy and adore thyself once more with gorgeousness!


Tags: , pansies, deadheading

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

ivorysoap76 June 3, 2009 at 7:50 pm

Will do! Thank you for the compliments!

Garden Man June 3, 2009 at 6:34 pm

Great blog post! I love learning about this online as gardening/landscaping are not only hobbies of mine but I actually do a little bit of work like that during the summer months as a second job. I appreciate your content in your blog and wish that you would keep up the good work 🙂

Thailand Breeze January 3, 2010 at 3:26 am

I love plants & flowers and can spend hours in the garden.

Thanks for sharing your technique. 🙂 Too bad that it’s too warm for pansies here in Thailand.

Colin August 13, 2011 at 6:47 pm

Thanks for the helpful tips on dead heading!

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