By Phran Novelli

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – It’s a mess – hand me a scissor or something. As summer drags on, a lot of gardens look worse for the wear. Cut back annuals that are giving out or browning back and getting lanky in pots, so they can regrow and make fresh flowers until frost.

Take on the perennials too – tall ones like Yarrow have flopped a lot this year, as they first grew taller with the rain, then got knocked over by more downpours. Echinachea and Monarda too – once the birds have feasted on the seeds, cut them back. Their shorter stems can stand up straighter, leaf out again and many will even rebloom; but even without flowers they’ll look neater.

Plants that grow in mounds – such as Amsonia and Artemesia – have a bad habit of opening up in the middle looking like someone sat on them – trim them back to encourage fresh growth and removed the smashed stuff.

Don’t make a big deal about it, just go get something to snip with and cut off the ugly bits. You’ll soon see how a quick August haircut can refresh the look of your garden.