Cutting Back Tall Herbaceous Plants

Autumn garden maintenance is important to ensure tidy borders & healthy plants coming into the winter months.

Herbaceous plants are plants that do not develop a woody stem, they only have fresh green stems which die down after summer. These dead stems are of no use & should be cut back in autumn.

When to cut back

  •  After flowering in Autumn

What you will need

  • Garden secateurs

Why we do it

  • To tidy up our borders after the summer


  • Remove old flowering stems. Using a secateurs, cut stems back to base
  • Remove any dead foliage around the base of the plants
  • Check for fresh growth at the base of your plants. Green buds or new shoots are early signs of next year’s foliage. These new shoots must not be removed


  • Old foliage can be kept in place as this will help to protect against frost
  • When removing flowering stems you can collect the ripe seeds
  • Clean, dry & store seeds before sowing them next the following spring


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