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How to Deadhead Daisies

Are you curious about how to deadhead daisies? These bright, cheerful flowers are easy to grow and care for, and make a lovely addition to any home garden. A few simple habits like deadheading can help you get the most out of these lovely flowers by increasing the number of blooms you’ll get during the growing season.

Closeup of a pair of daisies.

Deadheading also helps strengthen your daisy plant making it healthier not only for this growing season but also into the next. Keep reading for tips on how to deadhead daisies, more information about the benefits you get from deadheading, and when you may not want to deadhead your daisies.

What Does it mean to Deadhead Daisies?

Before you learn how to deadhead daisies, you’ll first need to know what deadheading actually means.

“Deadheading” is the process of removing spent blooms from a flowering plant. You’re basically taking away the dead heads of the plant, hence the term deadheading.

Once the flowers begin to fade and die, you can remove the spent blooms by deadheading, leaving the rest of the plant to continue growing and producing more flowers.

There are a lot of reasons why deadheading daisies is a good idea, we’ll get into some of those benefits next.

A dried daisy head.

What are the Benefits of Deadheading Daisies?

Many types of flowering plants benefit from regular deadheading, including daisies. Let’s look at some of the benefits and why you may want to make deadheading a regular part of your routine garden maintenance for your daisy plants.

Get More Blooms

Daisy plants have a limited amount of energy to use. If there are a lot of old flowers on the plant, the plant will try to maintain them, shed petals, and produce seeds, giving the plant less energy to put into creating more blooms.

By removing old blooms with deadheading, you are basically telling the plant to put more energy into producing new flowers rather than spend it’s energy trying to maintain dying flowers or produce seeds.

Regular deadheading will encourage your plant to keep producing new daisy flowers throughout the growing season. As old flowers begin to fade, you can remove them and the plant’s energy will be redirected into producing new flowers.

A mass planting of gloriosa daisies.
Gloriosa daisies (click to read about them).

Prolong the Blooming Season

When a lot of dead flowers are left on a daisy plant, the plant takes it as a signal that the current blooming season is over. It has produced enough flowers and now it is time to focus on seed production.

Once that happens, the plant will try to direct most of its energy into producing seeds. Seed production is an important part of any plant’s life cycle but you don’t want the plant to focus on it too early in the season at the expense of more flowers.

If the plant starts going to seed and putting most of it’s energy into producing seeds, it won’t be putting energy into producing new flower buds and that will make the blooming season shorter.

Once the plant has finished producing seeds, the blooming period will end and the plant will die back. Deadheading prolongs the blooming season by preventing the plant from putting too much energy into seed production too early.

Get Better Blooms Next Year

By conserving energy through deadheading, your plants are able to put more energy into developing a strong root system which helps the plant stay healthy and thriving into the next season.

Deadheading daisies this year not only means a longer blooming season for the current year, it can also help you get a longer blooming season next year.

When the plant is strong and healthy, you’ll get more blooms and better quality blooms.

A bunch of gerbera daisies in a garden.
Gerbera daisies (click to find out more).

Reduce Stress on Daisy Plants

Having a lot of blooms to maintain all at once can stress your daisy plants. Sending energy to so many things at once means the plant has less energy to give to each flower, root, stem, and leaf.

A plant that is stressed is more susceptible to damage from pests and disease. It may be slower to recover from injury and won’t withstand dry conditions as well.

By removing spent blooms, the plant has less places it needs to send energy meaning more energy can go to each individual piece of the plant, making it stronger, healthier, and more vibrant.

The Plant Looks Better

A plant full of dead flowers doesn’t look very attractive or inviting in the garden. Even a small number of dead flowers can make your plant look neglected and unsightly.

Removing the dead flowers by deadheading helps the healthy flowers stand out and makes your plant look healthier and more attractive.

By deadheading your daisies as soon as blooms start to fade, your plant will look vibrant and well tended.

Gaillardia daisies with some spent blooms on the plant.
Gaillardia daisies (click to learn more about them).

How to Deadhead Daisies

If you are familiar with deadheading other flowers the process for how to deadhead daisies is quite similar. Let’s walk through the steps for how to deadhead daisies and look at two main ways of doing it.

Remove Faded Blooms

To deadhead daisies, you’ll remove fading, discolored, or dying blooms so your plant has more energy to put into producing new blooms and creating a strong and healthy root system. There are two basic ways to deadhead, shearing the plant by cutting off the entire top layer, or removing blooms one by one.

Shear all at Once

You can shear the plant by trimming all the stems to an even length all at one time. This is a quick and easy way to remove a lot of dead blooms all at once.

The downside to shearing is that it removes fresh blooms along with the old ones. It will make your plant look clean and healthy by removing dead flowers very quickly, but it won’t give you the pleasure of enjoying continuous blooms.

If it has been a while since you last deadheaded your plant and there are now more spent flowers than new buds, shearing the plant to remove all the dead daisies at once is certainly an efficient option. If your goal is to remove spent blooms and improve the appearance of your daisy plant quickly, shearing may work well for you.

If you don’t want to sacrifice new flowers when removing the old, you may want to go with removing single blooms instead.

Remove Single Blooms

To enjoy as many flowers as possible, deadhead single blooms by removing flowers one at a time as they start to fade.

When you’re ready to begin deadheading, start by looking for any faded or dead blooms. When you find one, follow the stem down until you see a lateral bud. A lateral bud is an area where new leaves are growing out of an intersection between an old leaf and the stem.

Using pruning shears to cut a single spent daisy bloom.  Single bloom removal is one method for how to deadhead daisies.

Trim the stem using sharp scissors or pruning shears just above the lateral bud. New daisies will come from lateral buds so you want to trim above them, leaving the lateral bud in place to keep growing.

Continue removing spent, discolored, or faded blooms one by one in the same manner.

When you’re finished deadheading the plant should be free from any dead petals and faded flowers leaving only fresh, healthy flowers on the plant.

Either way you choose to deadhead, you can add the clippings to your compost pile as long as there are no signs of disease on the plant.

When Should You Deadhead Daisies?

Figuring out when to deadhead daisies is actually quite simple. You can deadhead daisies as soon as you see fading blooms. To get the maximum benefits of deadheading, check on your daisy plants regularly and remove dying blooms as soon as they start to fade.

A daisy plant with faded and dried blooms.

Daisies usually bloom in spring and summer, this is when you’ll start looking for old or dead flowers to remove by deadheading.

When Should You Not Deadhead Daisies?

Early in the growing season dead flowers are just dead weight. You don’t really get any benefits from leaving wilted blooms on the plant but you get a lot of benefits from removing them. Later in the growing season, there are a few reasons why you may want to stop deadheading and leave the remaining daisy blooms on your plants.

Save Seeds

If you want to save daisy seeds for planting next year, you can leave a few buds on the plant for seeds to mature.

A bunch of dried daisy seed heads.

To harvest seeds, leave the flowers on the plant until the the seed head is completely ripe. The yellow center will be gone and the flower will be brown and mostly dry. At this point you can remove the flowers and place them in a paper bag to finish drying.

Feed the Birds

Late in the summer when the growing season is coming to an end, the daisy plant will slow down considerably as colder temperatures signal it’s time for fall. There will come a point in the season when it’s unlikely that you’ll get more daisies even with deadheading. At this point you can leave the old flower heads for the birds. Birds will enjoy coming to your plant to pick out the seeds from the buds.

A goldfinch eating coneflower seeds.  It's important to know when to dead dasies and when not to.
A goldfinch eating coneflower seeds (click on link to read about coneflowers).

Final Thoughts on How to Deadhead Daisies

Deadheading is an important part of daisy care that will help you have the healthiest plants and most flowers possible. With regular deadheading you can enjoy healthy plants with beautiful, plentiful daisies all summer long. As an added bonus, your plants will look better too!

Excited for more daisy content? Then visit my daisy page for growing tips, comprehensive care guides, and more!