Spring is a key time for pruning tasks – we break down what to prune during Spring in today’s blog. If you are pruning in March – read this article on early Spring.
- Always use clean and sharp pruners. You can use alchol to santize pruners in between plants.
Bypass Pruners: Small branches 1/2″ or smaller in diameter. The most commonly used as it can be used on perennials, annuals, and other trees and shrubs
Lopping Shears: Medium branches 2″ or so in diameter. These have a long handle which make pruning thicker branches easier
Hedge Trimmers: For shaping finer foliaged hedges such as boxwoods
Often heavy pruning isn’t necessary unless it has been quite some time since you last pruned your Crape Myrtle. We don’t reccomend “topping” your Crape Myrtles as each topped branch will branch off into more branches causing a less neat and uniform appearance. Cuts should be made to a side branch or close to the trunk. This time of year is ideal to remove dead or unwanted branches and side shoots. If the upper part of the Crape Myrtle is dense, you can thin out the canopy by removing crossing branches allowing more sunlight and airflow into the canopy.
To give a Crape Myrtle a tree shape, remove all but 3-5 of the strongest trunks at ground level. Remove lower branches anywhere up to halfway up the height of the plant.
Holly (and other broadleaf Evergreens)
Heavy pruning (also called renovating) of broadleaf evergreens, such as holly, is very beneficial in early Spring months of March/April. If heavy pruning isn’t needed, you can prune leggy
Spring Flowering Trees & Shrubs
At the time of year, DO NOT prune your spring flowering trees and shrubs. Wait until flowering has finished to prune these.
Clean up & cut back procedures of the general landscape emphasizing also on perennials & perennial gardens
Monkey Grass “Liriope”
It’s very important to cut back Monkey Grass “Liriope” as soon as possible. February to March is ideal as early warming spells will have the new growth “pips” starting to proceed thru the old growth making it difficult to cut back the old growth without damaging the permanent new growth but if you haven’t pruned yet – go ahead and do so. It is also a great time to dig & divide Monkey Grass.
- Hardier, faster growing varieties of shrub Roses such as Knockout and Drift should be pruned now for size control.
- For more tender varieties that would have been heavily mulched to protect their vulnerable graft area, its’ now time to pull back the heavier protective layer of mulch and perform the heading back and thinning pruning that is needed
- Climbing Roses are also ready to be trained and cut back to focus on leaving the main canes & structure on the fences, arbors, or whatever structure is being used to support, if any.