Tips on Pruning Shrubs

Views: 18935 | Last Update: 2009-02-04
Tips on Pruning Shrubs - Provided by eHow
When pruning shrubs, avoid pruning when the flowers are in bloom, cut the branches down to the leaf line, and get rid of any dead or scraggly branches. Avoid pruning down shrubs more than one third with advice from a sustainable gardener in this free... View Video Transcript

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Yolanda Vanveen

Video Transcript

Hi, this is Yolanda Vanveen, and in this segment, we're going to give you some tips on pruning shrubs. Now, this beautiful shrub is a Ceanothus Victoria. It's one of my favorite shrubs in my garden, and I love the little blue flowers, that it produces. This little Ceanothus has really pretty blue flowers, and it's bloomed from fall until December. It's already December and it's still blooming, but it needs trimmed, so my theory for one, is not to trim your bushes or your shrubs, when they're in bloom, because you want to enjoy the blooms, so the best time to trim them, is right after they're done blooming, the middle of the winter, or even early spring, because once they've set their buds for the next year, you don't want to cut them off, and when you're cutting down your shrubs, try not to cut them more than one third of the size, down. That's my rule of thumb, and you want them to be as more spherical or in a circle as possible. You don't want to look like a Medusa, and when I cut down, you want to cut the branches down to where they meet another leaf line. You don't want to cut all the way down to wood, because what happens, is that all you'll have is wood, and they won't have new growth for the next year, and it won't fill out that well, so when you cut, you just kind of trim through, and I want this to be as full as possible, and it's kind of getting lanky, so I'm really going to hack at it a little bit, and just to try to make it look more like a circle, and I like to compost any of my cuttings, or cut them up into little pieces, and use them for mulch, because you might as well use what you've got, instead of buying it, and so if you set it into a garbage can, or cut it into little pieces,and another trick too, cut out any dead branches. There's going to be dead branches, so cut them out, and even along the bottom too, there's always some real wild branches, and I like to cut them out, just to make them look a little more even, because it is always nice to have a plant that looks a little better, and so, you don't need to cut a whole lot when you're pruning, but just to try to even it out a bit, and wherever they're coming out, like a Medusa, I just try to trim it back, and then cut it to the next branch, and again, I'm trying to save some of the blooms, because they still have some blooms on them, and they're just so beautiful, so I'll just continue to cut just a little bit at a time, and you can do it all at one time, or you can do it a little bit over the winter. As long as you don't cut anymore than one third of the plant down each year, you'll find that your plants will grow in the next summer, just lush, and really full, and they like to be pruned, so even if you're trimming some of the branches in the inside, just to give it a little more air and new growth, your plants will thank you, and they'll do so much better next year.