The Q&A Archives: Dianthus foliage mat

Question: Can someone please tell me where the foliage mat woud be on a dianthus. I bought two plants at Home Depot and placed each one in its own urn. they have bloomed beautifully and are now beginning to brown out in the cluster....I was told to cut off the whole flower stem just above the foliage mat below. Is the foliage mat at dirt level and the end of the long stem that the cluster of blooms was? the foliage mat at the base of the short stem below the cluster at the top? In other words, can someone tell me how to cut off the spent blooms so that I may get more blooms? Thanks so much

Answer: This is one of those occasions where it would be easier to show you than to explain how to do it! Without seeing your plants, I can't actually point to a spot where you should cut. But, dianthus are forgiving, so don't worry about making a bad cut. Simply use a pair of scissors, grasp a small handful of spent or nearly spent flowers, and snip them off. Continue until you've removed all the spent flowers Any stems or parts of stems left behind will just dry up and disappear. Cutting the spent flowers off in this way will give your plants enough of a haircut and make them look more attractive, but assures that you're leaving enough foliage for good plant health. Plus, if you cut the flowers off before they develop seeds, your plants will have the energy to produce a second flush of blooms. Hope this information helps!

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