The Q&A Archives: How do I keep a crocosmia babylon montbretia upright?

Question: My crocosmia montbretia looks healthy, flowers pretty well, and is spreading. However, the fronds end up falling over and the entire clump ends up fanning out on the ground. It ruins the beauty of the plant and ends up smothering some nearby, smaller plants. All the pictures show this as a beautiful, and very upright, plant. Any suggestions?

Answer: Sue,

Crocosmia, or as it is commonly called Montbretia, can tend to do that especially if light is limited causing it to "stretch" or if pounding rains or winds push on it. One option is to put some type of support in the bed where the Crocosmia is growing. There are commercial products made of wire for supporting tall perennial flower stalks.

I have made homemade versions by cutting small sections (about 3 feet long and wide) of wire mesh and bending it to make a horizontal "table" through which the stems can grow but that would support them from falling to the side. This means that a section of wire would be bent into an angular "C" shape and set on the ground so the horizontal central section is held up about 8-12 inches off of the ground by the two sides. At the end of the season you remove the wire supports when you cut the perennials back to the ground. The best supports have openings in the mesh around 2 inches in size so the stems are held upright with little room to flop over.

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