Tuesday, January 26, 2010


It drives me nuts when I see gardeners trip trees and cut bushes as if they don't know how to properly prune that plant. Well the truth is that they don't. Even when you see shrubs that are formed into a ball you think it looks nice but in reality most shrubs don't like being trimmed like that and may eventually die as a result. So how exactly are you suppose to prune a plant? Below are some tips to proper plant pruning.
  1. Know the plants natural growth habit - each plant has specific habit of growth. A specific shape it prefers to take. So when you try to prune a plant in a shape that is not natural for it, then it will always try to go back to it's natural shape thus causing more maintenance and money for you.
  2. Make cuts that heal quickly - have you ever heard that cutting a flower at an angle is good to help retain moisture? Not just true for flowers. The truth is that each tree has collar of growing cells that vary greatly among species designed to reinforce the limb and seals it off from the trunk so that if the limb dies the entire plant does not. Some collars are easy to see while others are less distinct. What you want to look for is a bulge or series of ridges in the bark around the base of the limb. Then you make the cut flush with the branch collar. For really larger limbs remove them in sections.
  3. Do not top a tree - when you top a tree you essentially destroy its natural shape and appearance, thus stunting its grown and ultimately weakening the tree.
  4. Prune during the right season - Evergreen and deciduous trees and shrubs are best if pruned during the dormant season (December through February). Pruning during the dormant season allows for new growth in the spring before blooming. Plants that flower in the early spring should be pruned immediately after flowering, before new growth starts.
  5. Have a specific reason for pruning - are you pruning to improve appearance, direct growth, encourage fruiting or flowering or to maintain health? Don't just prune because you realized that the large area of lawn you have is wasting water.
If you live in Orange County California and are looking for a maintenance contractor then shoot me an email and I will be happy to send you some names. (info@creationslandscapedesigns.com)

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