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Pruning and pinching is an essential part of plant care.
They are necessary for the formation of a flower, giving a beautiful shape, creating lush foliage.
If you don't do this, the flower will quickly become unattractive.
What is pruning and pinching, why and how these procedures are carried out at home, how to properly form a bush, and also what are the nuances of care after cutting a plant - read on.
What is cropping?
Pelargonium pruning is needed to remove old stems and shorten shoots.
Why and how to crop?
Why trim? This is necessary in order to get new inflorescences and to create a beautiful flower shape.
If you neglect pruning, then the lower leaves of the flower will begin to fall off, the peduncles will practically not appear, that is, the plant will lose its shape and will no longer look beautiful.
The flower has dormant buds, but the plant itself cannot give lateral shoots, so human help is needed. Thanks to pruning, these buds awaken and new shoots appear. Also, this procedure is required in order to:
- Stimulate the growth of pelargonium and ensure long flowering.
- Give the flower an even, neat shape.
- Prevent the occurrence of possible diseases.
- Improve air exchange.
- Facilitate the wintering of the flower.
By pruning, you can get new cuttings suitable for planting.
If the plant is large, then after removing unnecessary shoots, it will devote all its strength to the growth of new stems and leaves. As a result, peduncles will not appear for a long time or will not grow at all. To prevent this, in large bushes, only infected branches and branches without leaves are shortened.
Learn about the secrets of pruning pelargonium from this video:
What is pinching?
Pinching is the removal of the top of the stem, due to which the number of young shoots increases, and the plant becomes more lush.
From the video you will learn how and when to make the formation of pelargonium using pinching:
The basic rules of these procedures
- Use only clean, disinfected sharp instruments for trimming. It could be a razor, a knife. Pinching is done only with clean hands, so as not to provoke the occurrence of any disease in the flower.
- After pruning and pinching, the plant needs abundant light, otherwise new shoots will stretch out.
- Branches growing inward must be removed, as they prevent the ingress of light and normal air exchange, which leads to the occurrence of diseases.
- If there is a large distance between pairs of leaves, then the cut is made immediately above the leaves.
- Sick shoots need to be cut only to the healthy part, capturing 3-5 cm.
- It is desirable to treat the sections with brilliant green, alcohol, antifungal agent. Untreated cuts can dry out and make the shrub look unpresentable.
When to pinch a seed-grown plant?
You need to pinch pelargonium from seeds after the first 5-7 leaves appear. This is considered the optimal stem length, since if you pinch later, you may not achieve the splendor of the flower.
When a bush has a large number of new side shoots, they also need to be pinched in those places where the leaves are most abundant. You can pinch the flower until it takes a suitable shape.
Young bushes grown from seeds cannot be cut off.
Features of the procedure at home
It is recommended to pinch pelargonium in February or March, as at this time the plant is preparing for a new flowering. But, if you only need to correct the volume of foliage and flowering, then pinching can be done both in summer and in the second half of spring.
It should be remembered that pinching slows down the growth of new inflorescences. The pinching procedure is as follows:
- First you need to inspect the plant and assess its condition after winter. To understand whether the pinching will be enough, or whether he needs pruning.
- Disinfect the necessary tools and hands with a disinfectant. Do not pinch a flower with dirty hands.
- Then pinch the extended shoots. If pelargonium is grown from a cuttings, then you need to pinch over 8-10 leaves. And if from seeds, then you need to leave 2 less leaves.
- Next, small shoots growing inside the flower are removed. The middle of the plant should be free for proper air circulation. If the air and moisture stagnate, then the likelihood of fungal diseases is high.
- If the shoots are affected by disease, then pinching will be useless. They will have to be cut off to a healthy area.
- You need to pinch immediately above the sheet, do not leave too much, otherwise it spoils the appearance of pelargonium.
How to form a flower correctly?
To form the crown of the plant, you need to maintain a balance between the leaves left and cut off. When pruning, leave 2-5 buds on each stem.
If after winter the plant has practically not stretched out, then you can leave more buds.
Then, after the flower sprouts new young shoots, the pot occasionally needs to be twisted around its axis - this is necessary so that the leaves grow evenly. In the future, anyway, some shoots will be larger, then you will need to resort to pinching.
How to care after a haircut for the first time?
These procedures are stressful for the flower, so they need careful care.
- The pot should be in a well-lit place so that new shoots do not stretch out. If there is not enough light, then the pelargonium will be elongated again, and the number of inflorescences will be small.
- It is important not to allow temperature differences, it must be maintained within 17-23 °.
- For irrigation, you need to use settled water at room temperature. Overflow should not be allowed, as the root system will rot.
- After 10 days have passed, you can use top dressing. It is carried out once every 2 weeks. Top dressing should contain phosphorus and nitrogen, which contribute to the formation of foliage. When flowering is approaching, potassium fertilizers can be used.
Pelargonium is not a capricious flower, so it is not difficult to take care of it. The most important thing is to observe the appearance of the plant and understand when it needs pruning or pinching. Observing all the rules for these procedures and for further care, you can get a beautiful flower.