How do you thin out an over grown perennial garden

I don't know how to work from the front backwards and make it look attractive again.
  3 answers
  • Holly Kinchlea-Brown Holly Kinchlea-Brown on Jun 19, 2017
    Do you have a picture in mind of how you would like it to look? If so, look at what you have and mentally superimpose the ideal over the bed. First remove any weeds so that you can view the spacing between the plants. If your existing plants are too big simply take your spade and cut the plant right down through the roots and dig out the excess. Transplant the excess to another bed or put in a pot to give to a neighbour or friend. Keep comparing what your ideal is to the existing and adjusting each plant until you get the balance you are looking for. I make notes each fall as to what plants are too tall and need to be moved, or which plants have overgrown the space so that I can move /thin them in the spring before they get too big.

  • KattywhampusLOL KattywhampusLOL on Jun 19, 2017
    Hello Christina, I know that thinning out ANY garden is hard work (I used to help my gran on her farm during the summer), but perennial gardens offer a special type of challenge (to me) because thosep lants were put into the garden because they were liked and wanted, and now you have to take about 1/3 of them out, as well as removing any party crashing rogue plants that joined the party uninvited ;) AND the weeds! WHEW! You've got your hands full with this one! I am posting a few web site links here for you to check out and I hope they help. Go work on that tan while you thin out the garden, but make sure you don't get burned (remember that sunscreen and make that tan a healthy one). :)
    GOOD LUCK :)

  • Marcie Marcie on Jun 19, 2017
    You can thin it all out now, but perennials do better if you split them in spring or fall. Can you wait until this fall? Or... start with the really hardy ones (day lilies, hosta...) that are very hard to kill. Then do more sensitive perennials this fall.
    Whatever you do, try to wait until they are done blooming, which might mean
    several different work days. Good luck!