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Every year I give my many 'sedums' the Chelsea Chop in early May, but as its been so cold here in the West Midlands for so long I'm wondering when I should do it this year. Most of the plants are still very small. Any else have this query?

Chelsea chop + 10 days? though I bet they're not far behind come the day...


no warranties implied or given

Hi there,

I'm also in the West Midlands. I've just been reading this in Matthew Wilson's book. The plants must be about half to two thirds their eventual size with no flower buds and he recommends not doing it if plants are stressed due to lack of water. He talks about taking into account the climate and the kind of spring and winter we've had. HTH. 


Mine are still just 1cm high here in newcastle so can't see them getting the chop any time soon


Mine too Andy! They look as though they've already been chopped -right to the ankles! 



Cheslea is a month away.  Plenty of time for plants to catch up and for gardeners to take stock of their local conditions.

It's not crucial timing.  End of may early June when growth is vigorous I cut by about half.  I do this with most everything makes for sturdier plants that will flower longer.  Sedums just want to grow lushly in early spring ....too lushly

Things like argyranthemums that flower their socks off tend to wane a little in August so I trim the whole plant back to remove flowers, buds and emerging buds.  3 weeks later they are ready to flower non stop until late autumn....early winter for me.


Would the chop stop mine falling over every year? The insects don't mind if they're lying down but they'd please me more if they stood up. They're now about 6" and get to about 18" - 2'


Hi nut, yes, that's the main reason I do it to mine.  I was going to consign them to the compost bin as I got fed up with them falling over everything until I tried cutting them back when they were about 12-15" high.  Still might get rid to be honest - not overly keen on them, so if I need space for something else, they're high on the list of possible sacrifices! 

Can't sacrifice the sedums bob.....yes, you can.  I often feel same way about them but they do make nice autumn impact.  

I'm trying a newish one called Posties pride....supposedly an improvement on purple emperor. Think it's naturally more compact so won't give it the Chelsea chop



Thanks Bob. I like them, the insects love them so they get to stay. I'll try the chop at 12-15" and see how they go. How far back to you take them?


I once spotted 4 species of bee on one sedum flower head so will be keeping all mine but they do benefit from a chop or they flop on my fertile soil.    I take the specatibles back quite short and cut the purpley one by a half.


Thanks obelixx, i have Purple Emperor and one of the common pink ones. The get the hair-cut this year. I also have a much smaller pink calledRuby Glow, it flops but makes a good edger like that


I chop mine too but as you say obelixx it's the bees and butterflies which are the main attraction in having them. I sometimes chop some and leave others depending on where they are. They're so easy to propagate too. I had to rescue some from the rampaging bunnies which chopped them just a tad too far- - but I've always liked them.

I had the white one a few years back which was quite nice too 'Iceberg'.


 I grow 'Autumn Joy' and one called 'Matrona'...   I think to keep them compact you should lift and divide in Spring otherwise they will grow big and flop over...   mine are a bit behind this year, but I do love the Spring foliage on them.   I think I chopped off the old flowering stems a couple of months ago... is that what's called the 'Chelsea chop'... only in Feb..?  probably not the right thing to do... but it was a nice day...

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