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Re: Snapping vrs cutting bloomstalks

From: Bill Shear <BILLS@hsc.edu>

My reason for recommending snapping, as I did in my book, is that the break
occurs cleanly between cell layers, leaving a surface less likely to rot.
If one cuts, some of the cells will be cut as well, leaving an entry for
rot organisms.  The breaks heal faster than the cuts.  Also, as Chris said,
it's easier and quicker.

Technique is important--grasp the stalk close to its base and push in one
direction until it snaps naturally.  If you try to PULL the stalk from
above, or twist it, you will possibly uproot or damage the rhizome.  Works
best the morning after a rainy day, when the stalks are full of water and
nice and crisp.

Not to doubt the experience of others, but personally I have never seen
increase so close to the bloom stalk as to be in danger of being broken off
along with it.

Bill Shear
Department of Biology
Hampden-Sydney College
Hampden-Sydney VA 23943
FAX (804)223-6374

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