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Best Time to Prune Shrubs

Answering the Question of "When?" and Providing Examples


Purple beautyberry bush displays beautiful purple berries in fall, as this picture indicates.

Picture of purple beautyberry bush.

David Beaulieu

What's the best time to prune shrubs? It depends on the type of shrubbery you have: pruning shrubs grown for their floral displays requires a different mindset than does pruning those grown for their evergreen needles. Even the question of what's the best time to prune flowering bushes, specifically, can't be answered without breaking "flowering bushes" down into two categories.

Spring blooming bushes such as forsythia are generally pruned just after they bloom. By contrast, you'll want to prune some summer blooming shrubs in early spring, because they bloom on new wood; for example, beautyberry (picture) and bluebeard.

Likewise, questions about timing on pruning evergreens can't be answered without first determining whether the bushes to be pruned are needle-bearing or broadleaf evergreens. I address that issue in my article on the best time to prune evergreen shrubs.

Below, I discuss examples where the best time to prune the bushes in question may not be obvious to the average person:

When Should You Prune Lantana? Does Pruning Time Depend on Where You Live?

When Do You Prune Desert Bird of Paradise?

When Do You Prune Holly?

What About Pruning Hedge Shrubs?

Back to > Index to All FAQs

Did You Know?

Articles such as this one on when to prune shrubs are but the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the free resources available on this Landscaping site, which include:



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