StrepbyStrep: Advice About Disbudding and Showing Streps by Dale Martens
Disbudding Streps is done for a couple of reasons. Energy to make flowers is tremendous, so disbudding a newly transplanted Strep allows the plant to concentrate on forming new roots and healthy leaves. So when I transplant, I disbud for three months. If I had a November 1stshow, on July 1st, I would put a couple of young Streps that were in Solo cups into a 3 or 4 inch pot and keep disbudding until October 1st.
The attached are photos of Strep 'Fred's Yellow Ice', a new hybrid by Fred Bellairs in Michigan. I got it in the mail around March 18. The first photo shows how full of dirt it was from the postal challenges. Plus there was leaf damage. I divided the plant and put sections into their own pots. I had to remove a lot of damaged leaves as can be seen by leaves to the left of the newly potted plants. I placed each pot into a gallon sized zip lock baggie for about 3 weeks to minimize shock. I disbudded until May 27th for a July 4th convention. So that's only about 10 weeks, but what a difference it makes in leaf size/production. The last photo was taken a few minutes ago so the plants have produced lots of flowers in 21 days after the last disbudding. Now I should say my plant room is warm at this time. A colder room (below 75 degrees) would take longer. I've given away one of the pots, so have 2 left as potential show plants.