Dividing

Dividing is done for several reasons: Often, older perennials grow poorly and dividing reinvigorates them. Dividing also keeps perennials from overgrowing or encroaching on neighboring plants. You can divide plants to increase your plant stock; you may want more of that plant elsewhere in your garden. Finally, dividing allows you to share your plants with a gardening friend!

Dividing is done for several reasons
Older perennials can grow poorly
Dividing reinvigorates older perennials
Dividing allows you to share your plants with a gardening friend

To divide a perennial dig it up as if you are transplanting it (refer to the lesson 8 transplanting for details). Shake off excess dirt to expose the roots and separate the plant and roots into sections using either a serrated knife or your hands. If the perennial has a large tuberous root (called a crown) you can use a knife to slice off divisions of the root. Replant the sections you want to keep, treating them as if they were new plants.

Gently pry plant out of ground
Use a knife to slice off divisions of the root

• Dividing is best done in the Spring or early Fall.

Dividing in spring
Dividing in fall

• If the plant is in bloom, wait until after it has finished blooming to divide it.

It is best to wait until plant has finished blooming to divide it
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