Zinnias – How To Cut Them Back

Q: I put zinnias around my mail box. They grew five feet high! Is there a way to cut them back so they won’ t get too tall?

A: On a garden tour in England, I learned the phrase “the Chelsea chop”. British gardeners have learned that they should cut back perennials and tall growing annuals around the time of their Chelsea Flower Show in late May. By doing so the plants sprout new stems and grow stockier than they would otherwise. When your zinnias are six inches tall, pinch off the growing tip with a thumbnail. The plant will produce two stems which can be pinched again when they’re six inches long. At this point, add fertilizer and let the plant grow and flower. You’ll have a stocky plant with lots of blooms to enjoy.

  • Advertisement