The Q&A Archives: Heather

Question: We have heather planted out in front of our house. It is blooming very nicely, but when it rains it falls over and lays in a big circle and does not look nice. What can we do to keep it growing upward. I have tried to tie it loosely with twine, but it doesn't look very nice.

Thanks for your help!

Answer: Heather (Calluna vulgaris) is normally quite a stiff plant and should not need staking or support. Causes for flopping could be too much shade, too much nitrogen fertilizer (these plants need very little feeding) or possibly a lack of pruning. Heather should be trimmed back in late winter or very early spring, this helps keep it compact. You can trim it back lightly after it finishes blooming, in the meantime you might be able to support it with a peony ring or a short tomato ring. These are round wire supports shaped like rings on legs, the legs are inserted into the soil. I hope this helps.

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