Pruning for beginners

Pruning made easy.

There is a multitude of highly technical and complicated advice on the web about pruning. This is my guide to pruning for beginners.

  A few basic pruning rules.

1. There are very few plants that will die from being pruned at the wrong time of year.

2. Prune when a plant has finished flowering, not before.

For instance, if you prune Forsythia in the autumn, it won`t flower properly in late winter / early spring.

Winter Pruning


3. Prune back to a `node` that is a branch, leaf or bud, to prevent leaving a stub which will die back and cause disease.

4. If you need a saw (and definately if it`s a chainsaw!) it`s not pruning, it`s butchery.

 Why prune?

Good maintenance. In a shrub border, plants are growing at different rates and it is important to not have one dominant species. In general prune so that there is `space` around each shrub.

Pruning for beginnersAnd that`s it. Of course there is more to it to improve flower or increase fruit and I will be adding my thoughts to this in the coming months.

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