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Seasonal Pruning Guide

Plants have particular seasons when pruning is most beneficial. By pruning during this time, the tree or shrub will respond more favorably to the pruning without losing flowering or fruiting potential. Most deciduous trees prefer dormant pruning. Fruit trees should be pruned during dormancy. Early Spring, before the buds begin to swell, is best because you can remove any winter injury while you do your corrective training and pruning.

Evergreen trees often prefer a late Spring pruning, especially if your goal is slowing growth. Major work on evergreen shrubs is best done in March. This helps minimize the period during which the shrubs are unsightly. New Spring growth will emerge shortly after pruning work is completed, hiding any cut ends and bare branches exposed as a result of the work. Bear in mind that needled evergreens rarely resprout if all of the green is trimmed from a shoot or branch.

Spring flowering shrubs are best pruned immediately after the blooms fade. Next year's flower buds are formed on this season's new growth, so late season pruning removes the buds for next year's flowers. Properly timed pruning, however, will help to stimulate flower bud production and encourage good blooming for the following year.

Although most trees and shrubs can be pruned lightly at any time of year, major work should he reserved for the season each species prefers. The following guide will aid in determining the best season her pruning many popular trees and shrubs. For more detailed information, consult a publication such as Ortho's "All About Pruning" or The American Horticultural Society's "Pruning and Training." These references contain specific information about the pruning and training of individual plant species and types.

Seasonal Pruning Guide

Late Winter or Early Spring
Abelia
Barberry
Burning bush
Butterfly bush
Crape myrtle
Euonymus
Fruit trees
Honeysuckle
l-hydrangea (Pee Gee variety)
Hypericum-St. John's Wart
Lonicera
Magnolia
Nandina
Privet
Rose of Sharon-Althea
Roses
Summer flowering spirea
Viburnum
Most deciduous trees

Late Summer or Fall
Birch

Late Summer
Boxwood
False cypress
Photinia
Mid-summer
Flowering quince
Russian olive

After Flowering
Azalea
Beauty bush
Broom
Climbing roses
Crab apples
Forsythia
Kerria, Japanese rose
Lilac
Rhododendron
Spring flowering spirea

Late Fall
Ash
Willow