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Janet Macunovich

butterfly bush still green

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J.K. wrote (and we're shifting it here from email)

1. My butterfly bush has green leaves. Not sure if this is uncommon.

2. My dad's Pansie has three flowers on it.

3. One of my clematis' has green shoots on it. Never seen that this early.


We clipped a couple johnny jump ups (the tiny tri-color pansies) ffor a client's bud vase on Tuesday, too.


Don't let the butterfly bushes con you into thinking "Oh it's green I CAN'T cut that down. Not unless you have room for a 12' butterfly bush -- a hoary, thickly branched, old wood beast at that.


This winter they stayed evergreen so they have had four extra months to take in sun and sock away photosynthates. After such a winter they are better equipped than ever to come back from a hard cut.


So whack them back to the ground.


We're out the door RIGHT NOW to get into clients' gardens and cut those things that are budding out, the plants we want to keep smaller than their wont, or that we want to have more new shoots from the base rather than all high up. Clematis is one of them. The late blooming clematis we're cutting right back to zip, or to where the canes first grab the trellis/ support. The early blooming large flowered hybrid clematis we're cutting so at least one cane begins anew right near the ground -- so there's new growth from below as well as the tips. The all-new cane will bloom during the vine's second flush of bloom.

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