There are lots of reasons to divide the perennials in your garden. Among them are:
Keeping them healthy. Many perennials grow quickly, forming large clumps. If you don't divide them every three to four years, these clumps can die out in the middle, leaving a bare hole.
Overcrowded perennials are also more susceptible to attack from fungal diseases and insect infestations.
Keeping them beautiful. Overcrowded perennials often have fewer and/or smaller flowers than their well-spaced and divided counterparts. If your perennials are drastically in need of division, they may even appear stunted.
Keeping them in bounds. Some perennials (including gooseneck loosestrife, plume poppy, and obedient plant) are especially vigorous or even aggressive. Dividing these plants will help keep them from overwhelming their neighbors.
Making more plants. Dividing perennials leaves you with more plants of the same variety -- perfect for adding to other places in the garden or trading with friends, family, or neighbors.
While you can divide most perennials any time from spring to fall, those two seasons are best.
This is because dividing your perennials can be stressful on the plants -- and they'll recover better from the shock in cool, moist conditions. That said, if you want to divide your favorite perennials in summer, be sure to keep them well watered afterward.
As far as your plants go, wait to divide them until they're large enough that you can make several clumps out of them.
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