Honeysuckle vines are a ground cover plant that are also grown up trellises as a decoration. These vines are vigorous growers, and when not pruned, the upper portions of the plant block out sunlight to the lower portions of the vine. This causes the plant to die. Pruning is best done in the autumn, or in winter when the vines go into the dormancy period, notes New Mexico State University. Pruning properly will force out new branches and reduce tangling.
Prune back the top portion of the plant when grown up a trellis or fence to within a foot or two of the ground. This will produce vigorous growth but no flowering in the spring.
Cut back one-third of the honeysuckle vine from the top of the vine and leave some of the older branches, to reduce the vigorous growth of the plant and to encourage flowering.
Apply an organic mulch to the base of the vines in the spring and water the mulch to encourage the vines to grow again. This reduces weeds and helps the vines recover after an extreme pruning.