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Trimming kniphofia (tritoma?)

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karslinky blog photos
Joined: 8/28/2004
Location: Upstate New York
Posts: 1197
Posted: Jun/24/2007 4:58 AM PST

I have a kniphofia plant that I thought was supposed to bloom a mix of red and yellow, but the blooms were just yellow - are there varieties, or is the plant not getting enough sun or something? Also, should I trim the stems back after blooming? Will it bloom throughout the summer (I see one new shoot) or is it a one-time bloomer? I LOVE this plant, but was really hoping for the red/yellow color!
Thanks,
Stacey
treeman blog photos
Joined: 3/29/2002
Location:
Posts: 2874
Posted: Jun/24/2007 5:24 AM PST

If the flowers are yellow, then they will always be yellow. As far as removing the flower heads and stems, yes do so. If you do you may very well get a second, albeight small flush of blooms in late summer. I say that with some hesitancy because you are in upstate NY, and have a much shorter sumnmer than i am accustumed too.

When I was a kid in South jersey, we raised about an acre of tritoma for cut flowers. Needless to say, we probably controlled the whole east coast tritoma market, such as it was. They do make good cutflowers. At any rate our big harvest time was June, then a a small but steady stream the rest of the summer. We selected plants for thin stems so they would insert in vases better, where as garden tritomas should have a thick stem so they stand up better.
karslinky blog photos
Joined: 8/28/2004
Location: Upstate New York
Posts: 1197
Posted: Jun/24/2007 6:18 AM PST

So now I have to look for a red tritoma too? That's ok, I have room in this bed, but I am just a bit disappointed I love these flowers and it's good to know they are good for cutting too.
treeman blog photos
Joined: 3/29/2002
Location:
Posts: 2874
Posted: Jun/24/2007 11:45 AM PST

We would cut them daily, selecting the spikes just as the bottom blooms began to open.
karslinky blog photos
Joined: 8/28/2004
Location: Upstate New York
Posts: 1197
Posted: Jun/26/2007 5:53 PM PST

Here's my latest bloom. I trimmed back the old ones. Do I presume that if you cut when they are not in full bloom, they open up indoors?? Now I can't wait until next year (unless I get some late blooms again this year) to have cut flowers!!

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