Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Dividing Perennials: A New Tool

Today I was out in the yard moving and dividing perennials. I bought several new tools in the winter, and had been eager to use them. So today, I dug up a Lady's mantle (Alchemilla mollis), (not that it was huge and needed dividing, but I just really like this plant and wanted more of it):
After digging the whole plant up so I can see the rootball and crown of leaves, I used my new Giros perennial dividing knife to cut the whole thing in half, like a pork roast:

The Giros knife cuts through tough roots with ease. This seems a whole lot slicker than punching through plants with the blunt end of the spade or trying to pry them into pieces with your fingers. I also used the knife to to divide a huge clump of asters. In that case, I didn't dig up the whole plant. Instead, I just cut off a quarter of the plant and then dug that part up. It came out easily because the roots were separated from the rest of the plant.

And then there were two!


Crafty Gardener said...

That looks like a great gardening tool. I need to divide my lady's mantle as well, so hopefully I will be able to do it with the ease you did.

Karen said...

I'll be looking into getting myself a gardening knife now. I used a kitchen knife when I divided my irises. I think it's time for a proper tool, though. Thanks for the reminder -- and demonstration!