If you didn’t get a chance to transplant and/or thin out your perennials in the Fall, the optimum time, then do so now!

1. Divide clumps of perennials that need it. Most are best divided every three years. This is what I call, “spreading the love!” By now, I know which plant does best where and can transplant or share with some confidence.

2. Lift the entire clump from the ground and plant or pot while it’s still moist.

3. Check out the crowns and roots. Decide how many plants can be cut from the one clump. I use an old large butcher knife and slice right down from the top through the root ball. Gingerly spread the roots out if they are compacted.You can sprinkle bone meal on the roots at this point to promote growth.

4. Replant or pot up the divisions immediately. Give them a good soaking with some compost tea. Sometimes I soak chicken droppings over night in a bucket of water and water with this liquid gold!

5. Fertilize well established perennials this month. I do this simply by sprinkling chicken droppings each day as I clean out the coop. A different grouping of perennials gets fed in turn as I rotate around the flower beds.


With whom will you share your divided plants?

The sun is nervous as a kite

that can’t quite keep its own string tight

Some days are fair and some are raw

The timid earth decides to thaw

Shy budlets peep from twigs on trees

And robins join the chickadees

Pale crocuses poke through the ground

The mud smells happy on our shoes

We still wear mittens which we lose

John Updike

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