Q&A: In gardening, what does it mean exactly to “pinch tips” or “pinch stems”?

Q&A: In gardening, what does it mean exactly to “pinch tips” or “pinch stems”?

Question by runninlola: In gardening, what does it mean exactly to “pinch tips” or “pinch stems”?
I have started a little herb garden, and these are common instruction and since I’ve never “gardened” before, I have no idea what this means.

Thanks

Best answer:

Answer by Lynn
Hi. It means exactly that- to pinch them off, rather than using some sort of tool to cut them off. So to pinch the tips, you would be looking to find the new, very top growth (called terminal growth) at the tip of a stem and pinch if off. Then on some plants, even the stems themselves are soft enough to just pinch off. Both of these are useful when growing herbs, because you want as many branches per plant as possible, because more bushy plants are more sturdy, and they tend to produce more useable cuttings of herbs…pinching the tips or the stems themselves usually results in the plant putting out 2 or more stems in place of the removed tip/stem.

What do you think? Answer below!

3 Responses to “Q&A: In gardening, what does it mean exactly to “pinch tips” or “pinch stems”?”

  1. squidy says:

    Yup, it just means to remove them. It’s called “pinching” because people do it with their fingers/fingernails.

  2. Ishtar says:

    Remove the tops of the stems – usually the top few pairs of leaves – by pinching them off with your fingernails. This stimulates the production of side branches so that the plant becomes bushier.

  3. Crystian says:

    It means that you use your fingers to pinch off the tips of the plant or stem.

    Here is some more advice on herb gardening:

    http://www.quick-and-easy-vegetable-garden.com/planting-herbs.html

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *