The key to succession planting is counting the stems on your flower farm

As a flower farmer, you want to get the most flowers out of every bed that you plant. Your ability to succession plant is in part dictated by the length of your growing season.  
Observation of how many stems you cut from annual flowers will help you to plan your succession growing based on predictable patterns. The key, is good record keeping on your flower farm.

Working out how I would do this in future years was on my planned list of learning for this year.
How to work out succession planting. Keeping flower farm records. Flower Farm Planner 2023. Growing cut flowers. Flower Farming tips and advice
The graphs show what happened with most annual flowers that we cut this year.

1 - a few stems are cut
2 - increasing numbers of stems
3 - peak performance
4 - decreasing numbers of stems
5 - a few stems.

Almost all annual flowers that we cut on our flower farm fall into this pattern. I know this because I keep a record of how many stems we cut from every bed.

The distribution is a standard bell curve. The thing that is different for every grower is how long the phases 1-5 last.  

And phases 1-5 are also different depending on your growing conditions.

When you know when a flower is becoming less productive (4), you can decide whether it is worth keeping (ie. you still need flowers from it) or taking out from a bed so that you can plant something else (ie. your next succession).

To be able to do this, you need keep a record of how many stems you are cutting. I know it's a pain, and counting to 10 over and over again is harder than it sounds😂. 

But there is so much information to gain that will help you to grow when you do it. I promise that it is worth the geekery!

Hope this helps!


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