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elljeedub
Do Anise Hyssop plants (in the mint family) need to be plucked/pruned at the top to make them bushier?
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I know with basil, pruning is important, and I'm not sure about the mint family. Thanks!

According to gardenguides.com: Winter Care Step 1: Analyze your climate to determine when to trim back the stems of your anise hyssop. Step 2: In a mild winter climate, like USDA zone 9, use your pruners and cut the woody growth back in late fall for a more compact plant shape the following year. Step 3: Delay pruning of your anise hyssop if you live in a cold climate. Provide additional winter protection to your plant and do not disturb the leafless stems on the plant until spring. Cut back the stems with your pruners to 6 inches above the ground in early spring. Read more: How to Care for Anise Hyssop Plants in Winter | Garden Guides http://www.gardenguides.com/97753-care-anise-hyssop-plants-winter.html#ixzz1xVW0XfSC
As for "plucked" at the top - with a great many plants, if you pinch out just the top two smallest tip leaflets, that re-directs some of the plant's upward-apical energy into developing the side branching. It usually makes a big, positive difference, especially at the beginning of the growth season. So it could be a very good idea for your anise hyssop early in the year. And especially if your anise hyssop, or any plant, is growing in a somewhat shady position, which can tend to make them leggy as they reach for light. My beloved mother-in-law told me this first about a cherry tomato I was growing as a hanging basket. It became especially gorgeous & productive with all the side-branching from pinching off the tips. Later I had a 60' hedge of Amalanchier - Serviceberry / Saskatoon Berry - across the front of my property. From the very first I went out in the early spring every year! with a pair of comfortable, sharp scissors & cut the tips off the whole hedge! It sounds a little OCD but goes quickly enough if you decide what you're going to think about while you snip. The hedge was a showpiece at blooming time & bloomed, leafed & produced lots of berries from tips down to the ground. I believe the tip-pruning - only 1/2" - made the difference between nice & spectacular.
Definitely pinch the tops for bushier growth. I've grown anise hyssop for years in dappled shade in Zone 7. Pinch in the spring. Anise hyssop is in the Mint family, and can be pinched similarly as you would pinch spearmint. More branches equal more of those lovely, fragrant, bee and butterfly-attracting flowers.

 

 

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