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Heather's Helpful Hint

When to Prune
March 10, 2011

This is the time of year that many of you are calling with questions about pruning. Let's try to make it simple.

DO NOT prune these shrubs until after they bloom:

     • Azalea, Rhododendron, Pieris, Mountain Laurel
     • Lilac, all varieties
     • Forsythia, Deutzia, Mockorange, Kerria
     • Camellia
     • Dogwood trees
     • Oakleaf Hydrangea, Old Fashioned Mophead or Lacecap Hydrangea
     • Flowering Cherry, Plum, Pear, Crabapple, Redbud, Magnolia

     • Any summer blooming shrub like Butterfly Bush
     • Rose-of-Sharon, Peegee type Hydrangea, or the Everblooming Hydrangea
     • Vitex, Spiraea  
     • Roses
     • Beautyberry
     • Shrub Dogwood

Most shade trees except maple and birch (it is best to prune in the summer when their sap will not bleed so much). Most fruit trees (Thinning branches now removes some flower buds and improves the quality of the fruit produced later).

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