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Pruning Basics

Most plants need regular pruning or the very lest a tidy-up every so often. Generally, regular pruning keeps plants healthy and bushy. These tips will have you snipping in all the right places.

  • Keep your pruning tools clean and sharp. Blunt and dirty tools can damage plants and spread disease.
  • Prune back roses by a half to two-thirds in winter. Always cut above an outward-facing bud.
  • Tidy your hydrangeas in winter. Remove dead or old wood to reduce crowding and to stimulate new shoots. After blooming, trim flowered shoots to just above a plump set of buds.
  • In winter, tidy up deciduous shrubs and trees.
  • Trim out dead twigs and branches. Prune to the nearest branch or trunk. When pruning back to the trunk, look for a branch collar, often just a ripple in the bark on the trunk, and prune to the outside of this.
  • Ensure all cuts are clean, without splintering the wood, and that they’re sloped to allow water to run off.
  • A good general rule for most spring flowers, shrubs and trees is to prune back after flowering.
  • Remove flowers as they finish to encourage new blooms.
  • Many perennials, and even kangaroo paw, benefit from being cut back to ground level after flowering.