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What you need:
  • Bamboo stakes, various lengths
  • Jute twine
  • Scissors or knife
The best time to begin staking your perennials is in mid-spring. Do this when the plant's foliage is high enough to soon hide the stakes, but not so high that they've already begun to flop over. Here's an effective and inexpensive method using bamboo and twine.
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If you are lucky enough to have access to a bamboo planting, make your own stakes. Otherwise, purchase an appropriate size. Each average-sized perennial needs 4-5 stakes. Twine and stakes painted green are less conspicuous.
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This peony will grow to about 2 ft. To begin, select 4-5 stakes and trim them a few inches longer than the plant's ultimate height. Make a circle of stakes around the plant 2-4 in. from the crown, pushing each stake 4-6 inches into the soil.
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Tie the free end of the twine about halfway up one stake. Use a stake in back to hide the loose end of the string. Make a ring around the stakes, tying the twine around each stake in a single knot as you go. The ring of twine circles the stakes about halfway up. Pull the twine even, but not taut between each stake.
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Now form a simple cat's cradle of twine by passing it between opposing stakes above the crown of the plant. Tie in a single knot to each stake. Be careful not to damage or break the tender spring foliage. Cut the twine and tie the loose end to the stake in the back.
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Next, tie the twine to the same stake 4-6 in. below where the top of the plant's foliage will reach. Form a ring around the stakes just as you did before. Finish with another simple cat's cradle, preferably at angles to the ones below. Here is how the stakes look when finished. If the plant grows taller than 3 ft., you may need 3 rings of twine. If the plant is less than 2 ft. high, one ring may suffice.