Monthly Archives: October 2014

Pruning in the Fall


Fall is a great time to prune and shape trees and shrubs!  There are many reasons to prune this time of year and a few tricks to help know what can be cut and how far to go.  Most people prune to keep a plant at a particular size or to thicken a leggy plant.  Other reasons to prune (especially trees) is to create a stronger plant and keep them from tearing apart in storms.  One rule of thumb to use is no more than 1/3rd at a time.  This could be 1/3rd of the plants’ tips cut off or 1/3rd of the branches thinned down( take every third branch down to where you want it and next time you trim you do another third until your plant is ultimately at the size you want).  Many Spring blooming plants should NOT be pruned this time of year due to next years flower buds having already been set.  Lilacs, Viburnum, Forsythia, Flowering Almond, & Dogwoods are among the group you want to hold off on.  Also, there are a few plants that can be pruned pretty heavily (more than 1/3rd) including Spirea, Potentilla, Butterfly Bush, Privet, & Knockout (any shrub) Rose to name a few.  Check out the November Garden Calendar from Purdue University!