How to Prune a Flowering Quince


Flowering quince grows 6 to 10 feet tall and just as wide, producing scarlet red, pink, orange or white flowers on bare branches in early spring. This plant grows well in USDA zones 4 to 8, where the temperature stays above -30 F. Since this is a spring-flowering plant, you must be aware of when to prune it. If you prune it too early or too late, you can disrupt the flowering of the plant. Knowledge of how to prune this plant properly will help you produce a healthy and vigorous shrub.

Step 1

Time your pruning of this bush properly. Flowering quince is a spring-flowering shrub, which means it blooms on twigs developed the summer before. Pruning immediately after the blooms fade will encourage new growth at the perfect time.

Step 2

Sterilize your pruning shears before using them. Use a rag to spread rubbing alcohol over the blades. This will prevent the spread of disease to your flowering quince.

Step 3

Identify the oldest, woodiest stems of the shrubs. These will usually flower poorly in the spring. Cut 1/3 of these stems down to the base of the plant.

Step 4

If the plant becomes straggly or grows out of bounds, cut the entire shrub down to the ground. This is called rejuvenation pruning. The plant will rebound from this with vigor.

Things You'll Need

  • Pruning shears
  • Rag
  • Rubbing alcohol


  • University of Nebraska, Lincoln: Flowering Quince
  • Clemson University Extension: Pruning Shrubs
  • University of Illinois Extension: Common Flowering Quince
Keywords: pruning flowering quince, flowering quince care, trimming flowering quince

About this Author

Sarah Morse recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English language and literature. She has been freelancing for three months and got her start writing for an environmental website.