How to prune evergreens year-round to make them look beautiful
Your landscape’s most hardworking elements are evergreens. They are the most productive plants in your landscape. In winter they add color to garden beds and front entries, while deciduous plants go bare. To keep evergreen shrubs and trees healthy, you will need to prune them occasionally. Sometimes, rapid growth can be a problem that is obstructing walkways and other plants. Pruning evergreens can be a bit more difficult than trimming other trees or shrubs. This guide will help you understand the basics of pruning to ensure you have years of beautiful, year-round color from these plants.
Tips for trimming evergreens
Pruning is a great way to get rid of overgrown or fast-growing evergreens, as well as trees and shrubs that have been damaged or lost. The main objective is to keep the plant’s natural shape as much as possible, unless you are creating a topiary or sculpted hedge. You can now swap your hedge trimmers in for sturdy pruning shears and loppers to carefully remove individual branches. Each branch should be removed to its main branch or trunk. You may have to trim a branch to the ground if you are pruning shrubs. An annual pruning is a better way to keep an evergreen in good shape than doing large pruning projects every few years.
How to trim overgrown evergreen trees
It can be difficult to control evergreen trees that exceed their limits in terms of their planting space while still maintaining their natural form. Evergreen trees rarely produce new growth on branches that are older than they were. White pines, for example, only form new growth at the tips. A dead branch stub will be created by cutting a branch down to half its length. The best way to reduce the size of an prune evergreens evergreen tree’s evergreen is to trim the lower branches back to the trunk.
How to Trim Evergreen Shrubs That Have Grown Too Much
Shrubs can usually handle more intensive pruning than evergreens, which can cause them to grow larger. It is better to prune an overgrown shrub one branch at time than to shear it. It will be easier to keep the shrub’s natural form. Remember that many evergreens don’t produce new growth on older branches, so shearing some evergreens can make a mess and take a while to grow out.
Maintaining Evergreen Hedges
Maintaining a hedge requires regular pruning. Fast-growing evergreens may require a spring pruning and a mid-summer trim in order to keep them in check and tidy. Common evergreen hedge plants include boxwood, juniper and yew. You can use a pair of sharp shears to do the job. However, powered hedge trimmers are faster. Be careful to not cut the hedges to the dead zone, which is the inner part of the plant that has no leaves. Some species may produce new buds if they are cut back to the bare branches. Others won’t. Keep the foliage to the outermost two inches.
When is the best time to prune evergreens?
Pruning in spring or late winter is the best time for most evergreens. Spring pruning allows for the wounds to heal quickly, and new buds can develop. One exception is flowering evergreens like camellias and rhododendrons. Pruning flowering evergreens immediately after they have bloomed is a good way to maximize the flower buds for next year. Pruning evergreens in the fall or late summer is a good idea. Pruning too late in the growing season can cause winter damage to plants.
When removing dead, broken or diseased evergreen leaves, the calendar doesn’t matter. As soon as you notice the branches, remove them. Then, cut back to healthy, living growth or the main stem. You want to leave the plant in its natural state. This can be done by cutting the branch to the ground or back to the trunk for shrubs.