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How to Pinch Out Sweet Peas (for Bigger Blooms!)

In this video, Dave shows the techniques for how to pinch out sweet peas for bigger blooms when they flower.

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Here’s what Dave says in this video…

This morning we’re going to be looking at how to pinch out sweet peas.

The Best Time to Pinch Out Sweet Peas

We set them last October and as you can see they’ve grown to about six inches long and the best time to pinch the sweet pea out is when they’re sort of between four and eight inches long So these are ideal And you can see by looking at these these aren’t quite ready yet So I’ll be leaving those until they get to the right length

Why Pinch Out?

And so pinching out basically what it does is it makes you plant become bushy It’ll take lots of side shoots if you want to just grow sweet peas for like a competition or just for cutting to put in your house You don’t need to pinch them out because then you’ll just get one straight stem with fewer flowers on The flowers will be bigger and it stems on your flowers will be longer as well But generally if you just want them for a display in your garden the best thing to do is to pinch them out You get more flowers but the slightly smaller flowers

How to Pinch Out Sweet Peas

So pinching out is exactly what it says It is best way to do it is just with your finger and thumb and just snip them out You can use secateurs if you wish But just make sure that they clean So what you’re looking for is where you’ve got your leaves attached to each main stem You want a three two or three leaves off your stem and all you do is with your Finger and thumb is just up to that where the leaf joins the stem Just pinch it out and it’ll come out quite easy they’re quite tender And that’s all you do And that that will encourage it to put shoots up from all the leaf joints and you’ll get a bushier plant because we potted these up toilet rolls last October each individual plant you can take out any time you want

How to Harden Off Sweet Peas

These will stay in the greenhouse now probably until mid April beginning of May and you just need to harden them off And all that means is that you pop them outside during the day bring them back into the greenhouse at night This is this is not a heated greenhouse so it’s quite cold in here Even at night time but the plants can can take that As you can see they’ve got a decent root system The roots are starting to come out at the bottom and by pinching them out, that will also encourage the roots to to develop as well because the plant could be looking to be more vigorous and send lots of side shoots If you haven’t already set your sweet peas it’s not too late

Am I Too Late to Sow Sweet Peas?

You can set them up to the end of February and all it means is that they’ll flower later. But as a rule of thumb if if you set them in a pot in October you tend to get early flowers and the plants are little bit healthier because they have time to to develop a decent root system before you plant them out And of course you can even plant the seeds straight into where you’re going to grow them in the garden If you wish that one there is ready for pinching So again it’s just a matter of just above where the leaf joint is just pinching it And as I say they come out really easy and that’ll just heal heal and you’ll get your side shoots from each of these joints You see it’s got tendrils so it’s already thinking about starting to climb And so once you see the tendrils that’s usually a sign that they’re almost ready for pinching out You know you can still cut them even when you’ve got even they’re like in a bush but they’re just smaller so you just need a smaller like a posy vase Yeah but with the single ones you’ll get the stem sort of that long with maybe four or five individual blooms on with the bush bush ones you might get stems sort of half the size with two or three flowers on because it is a mass of them You get a better display for your garden