Plant Care 101: Pruning for an Explosion of Growth
Though there are plants that do not require pruning, most plants grow better with a little bit of tweaking here and there. The trick lies in knowing what to prune, when to prune and how to prune. Most flowering plants need to be pruned during their dormant season, while some spring blooming ones need to be pruned immediately after flowering.
Pruning during the wrong season might lead to fewer flowers or fruits. But as long as you prune the plants correctly and avoid pruning mistakes, you should see explosive growth!
1. Pruning reduces competition for water, nutrients and sunlight. Plants generally compete against each other for these three factors.
2. Pruning lessens plant diseases and pest issues, since plants get enough sunlight after proper pruning.
3. It improves the quality of flowers and fruits. Pruned trees generally have bigger, better fruit!
4. Prune work makes trees and shrubs look more aesthetically pleasing, making your garden or yard look beautiful.
There are different tools for pruning, and you can select the right one depending upon your plants. Clean and sharp tools not only make prune work easier, but they also keep your plants strong and healthy. The basic tools are saws, shearers, loppers and pruners.
Flowering Shrubs, Trees and Vines
Flowering shrubs and trees are probably the most confusing types of plants. The general rule is to prune fall and summer flowering shrubs and trees in their dormant season (early spring or late winter), while the spring flowering shrubs and trees are pruned when their flowers die away.
Berry Plants and Fruit Trees
Fruiting plants generally need prune work when they are dormant. Usually there is just one chance to work on buds for the next season, so extra care is needed with berry plants and fruit trees. But if you do not prune your fruit trees properly, their produce will gradually decline.
Because evergreens do not require a lot of pruning, they are easier to grow. Generally, we recommend that you leave your evergreens unpruned. If you need a smaller sized evergreen, it’s best to select a dwarf evergreen instead of pruning a full-grown tree.
But this doesn’t mean your evergreens can’t be pruned at all! If you want your evergreens to grow a little fuller, try a bit of well-timed cutting. Prune your evergreen while it’s still young to make the process easier.
Perennial Bedding Plants
Non-woody perennials require the most meticulous pruning work. Most perennial plants must be cut back completely during the growing season, especially the flowering varieties. And though they’re not necessarily low-maintenance, all that prune work for your perennials pays off!
But whether you're pruning perennials or evergreens and beyond, it's ideal for explosive growth. Check out more on pruning and beyond here!