Many perennials are top heavy and bent stems function poorly. Cracks are entrances for rot organisms. Stake plants when they are set out, not when something has happened to them. Early staking allows the plant to cover the stake, makes orientation of flowers for best display easier, and increases storm tolerance. Stakes should be six to twelve inches shorter than the mature plant and are stuck in the ground far enough to provide firm support.
Fasten stems to the stake with string, or wire covered with paper or plastic. Do not make the ties too tight. Put a loop of wire around the stem, twist it, make a second loop around the stake, then twist and cut the wire. The stem is in one loop, the stake in the other. This method causes minimal injury to the stem.