The usual instructions about staking plants refer to tying the plants to stakes to keep them from falling over. We might stake a gladious or a foxglove so it won't lean, for example. I do this, but I have been noticing how often I stake a plant for other reasons.
Yesterday I staked a little annual bush morning glory (Convolvulus tricolor) to keep the wind from blowing it over and breaking it. It is in a container, and consists of about 5 branches that start near the ground. In a strong wind, it was waving back and forth, threatening to break.
Today I staked a fuchsia-flowered gooseberry (Ribes speciosum) to keep one of its thorny branches from reaching into the path and stabbing somebodies knees. Actually it was the second time I had staked that branch back. I often stake once, and then, in a couple of weeks, restake, with more pressure than the first time. The plant might break if you do it all at once, but in two stages, you can do it.
Last week I staked a viper's bugloss (Echium vulgare 'Blue Bedder') to keep it from leaning onto a wee viola. I am always ready to referee between competing plants this way, staking one out of the way of another.
And all summer, I have been staking rose canes to make them take a better direction--for example, not reaching out over a lawn, not growing against another cane, not reaching into the neighboring rose. These are often twice-staking operations, since rose canes are rather stiff, and I don't want to break them. But by staking them sort of in the right direction once, then pulling the stake and resetting it to apply more pressure, I have gotten 5 poorly directed canes to straighen up and fly right.
Other gardeners must do this stuff, but you never read about it. Readers, have you been doing any creative plant staking lately?