How To Prune St John’s Wort. Best Easy Guide

You have two considerations to master how to prune St John’s wort. The process itself is relatively simple, similar to how one would maintain other plants like lobelia. Remember that some plants require pruning as part of their maintenance practice to keep them healthy. 

More so, plants like St John’s wort flower from spring to summer, but pruning is necessary to keep them blooming well. Not only will pruning benefit your plant’s flowers and overall health, but this practice should keep them within control and maintain a neat-looking garden. Shrubs are excellent additions to the garden, but only if you retain their shape regularly. 

 

How To Prune St John's Wort. Best Easy Guide

Comprehensive Guide On How To Prune St John’s Wort

 

Timing

 

Early spring

Like with other plants, the best time to prune a St John’s wort is during early spring because new growth is about to begin. As mentioned earlier, these plants produce flowers in the summer, so you want to avoid pruning during this time, or you’ll have no flowers for the season. The blossoms will bloom as the plant grows in spring, and this is the ideal time to cut the plant back. 

 

Mid-summer

Besides early spring, are there other periods for pruning St. John’s wort? Pruning in early spring will help rejuvenate the plant and recover. You can cut every spring for maintenance, but some gardeners also prune half of the new stems in the middle of the summer to create a fuller growth. 

Another importance of this timing is that it will maintain your St. John’s Wort healthy and flowering. If you have many shrubs, you also want to thin some of them to provide a suitable space for each plant. 

You can cut the old and unproductive stems, which stand out from the others due to the odd shape and tall height. 

 

Three-year period

Lastly, a useful tip to remember is to plan a three-year period of pruning. Start with pruning one-third of the growth during the first year, one-half of the old stems on the second, and prune the remaining original branches in the third year. You can do this in addition to cutting for maintaining the shape and height of your shrubs.

 

Method

Before anything else, it’s also worth noting that St. John’s wort or Hypericums are a diverse group of species. Therefore, you want to consider groundcovers, shrubs, or spreaders when pruning your plants. Otherwise, the technique itself is no different than pruning other plants that require them. 

 

Tool preparation

For example, you want to use sharp and sterilized tools to create a clean cut. This retains the look of the shrub but won’t also put the plants at risk for infection. Remember to sterilize your shears with bleach and water and sharpen them beforehand as pruning presents an opportunity for pathogens to attack your plants. 

 

For rejuvenation

Pruning itself involves selecting all the damaged and dead branches. You can also keep your shrubs tidy and prevent them from overgrowing in the area by pruning the crossing branches. This will thin the plant, and you can also reduce the branches’ tips to help it rejuvenate itself for the next season. 

 

For flowering

Gardeners often prune at one-third of a St. John’s wort shrub’s total height to promote branch development and flowering from the cut tips. Aim to cut at an angle around 6 inches from the ground. But otherwise, a quarter an inch above the bud in a direction where you want new growth is also optimal. 

You can do this around the middle or late in March, especially for your plants that seem to have problems in flowering. 

 

How To Grow St. John’s Wort

Now that you know the proper way of maintaining these shrubs, you should also study how to correctly care for it. The process itself is simple, where you’ll choose an area with full sun and has well-draining soil. Perhaps the most significant problem you want to avoid is an overly wet environment. 

Watering and feeding St. John’s wort is as simple as maintaining soil moisture and using compost annually. Once established, the plant can survive drought and even poor soils. And if you want to prevent seed formation, you must deadhead the plant’s flowers when they fade. 

In terms of propagation, you can start the seeds indoors or sow them directly on the soil. But unlike other plants, you only have to press the seeds into the surface instead of covering them with soil. On the other hand, you can take stem cuttings around 4 inches long from an existing healthy parent plant for rooting St. John’s wort.  

 

Conclusion

Pruning shrubs is a simple practice that will rejuvenate your plants and promote flowering. Learning how to prune St John’s wort correctly will ensure a tidy garden and gorgeous blooms every season. You only have to consider the proper timing and method, and you shouldn’t have any problem maintaining this shrub. 

In general, early spring or mid-summer is the ideal time to prune St John’s wort. You can remove the damaged stems or use these periods to cut the tips and encourage more blossoms. The pruning technique itself is straightforward, where you reduce the branch tips and prune at one-third of the plant’s total height. 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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