Garden Tip 82:

PRUNING FLOWERING SHRUBS

We are well into spring and it is time to talk a bit about pruning spring flowering shrubs (those that bloom before June). My advice is to “follow the flower” by pruning spring flowering shrubs right after they have finished blooming. Spring bloomers will develop next years flower buds on this season’s growth, so it is important to prune them early in the season to give them plenty of time to grow and set bud for next year.

Save the hedge shears for pruning just that– hedges– such as yew and privet. Prune flowering shrubs selectively with hand pruners so they maintain their natural shape. Spring flowering shrubs include forsythia, lilac, azalea, rhododendron, viburnums, weigela, quince and andromeda. We can follow the flower on summer blooming shrubs as well, and we will talk about those at a later date.

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