How to Prune Wisteria Vines


In the spring, wisteria puts forth a profusion of purple, fragrant blooms. Depending on how the wisteria bush is pruned, it can grow in a bush, around trees or even cover the sides of homes. Always take care where you plant wisteria. It is such a strong vine that it can tear fences down and invade the cracks of homes. Regular pruning will take care of any potential problems.

Step 1

Tie new shoots to a fence, frame or against a tree trunk to fill in any gaps in the leaves during the month of August. Cut the current limbs approximately 1 foot to restrict growth and produce more flower buds.

Step 2

Prune again in February to shorten the limbs approximately 1 to 2 inches. Cut at a 45-degree angle just above a flower bud. The buds look like knots in the limb.

Step 3

Train young plants by inserting a 4-to-5 foot support pole in the ground next to the plant. Allow the plant to grow until it reaches the top of the support. In February, cut the tip so that the main trunk will produce side stems. In August, prune again as you would for an existing wisteria.

Step 4

Cut any old, dead trunks just above healthy, green side limbs. This will cause the base of the wisteria to continue growing through the cut you made, and the plant will fill out. Note that if your wisteria has to be severely pruned, it will take approximately three years for flowering to begin again.

Things You'll Need

  • Pruning shears
  • Tree loppers
  • Gloves
  • Ladder


Keywords: how to prune wisteria, pruning wisteria, caring for a wisteria

About this Author

Cathy McClellan has five years' experience in newsprint as an assistant editor and is a freelance writer. She has 20 years' experience working in the medical field and is currently licensed as a Texas Insurance Representative. She also has many years in home improvement and gardening.