By Joanne K., Pitt County Arboretum Extension Master Gardener Volunteer
But a word of caution: be careful to prune at the right time. Otherwise, you will lose or reduce that year's blossoms.
healthier in the long run. Shrubs responding well to such pruning include azaleas (Rhododendron spp.), butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii), forsythia (Forsythia spp.), hollies (Ilex spp.), mock orange (Pittosporum tobira), spirea (Spirea spp.), and weigela (Weigela florida).
There is no need to treat pruning cuts with sealers, as doing so may slow healing. Avoid pruning after July 4 because the new growth may not mature before cold weather sets in and this could damage the plant. The exception is dead, diseased, damaged, or crossing limbs, which can be removed at any time.
Pruning shrubs is both an art and a science. Your shrubs will thank you when you do it right by following the above practices at the right time.
All photos: J. Kollar
1. Abelia x grandiflora 'Kaleidoscope
2. Chaenomeles Flowering Quince
3. Lagerstroemia indica Crape Myrtle