If a plant is planted in the right place, minimal pruning will be required.  People often don’t do their research on a plant’s mature size and plant it in a space that is not big enough.  Windows may become covered or paths or gates may become obstructed by growth.  Furthermore, plants can be placed too close together by those in search of instant gratification and a full look.  A few years later, the plants have to either be drastically pruned or removed.   Over time, excessive pruning weakens and disfigures shrubs and results in a lot of unnecessary work and yard waste.

However, If you have selected a plant whose mature size fits its location, there are several reasons when pruning is appropriate.

1)      Health – prune dead, damaged or diseased wood so that energy can go to producing new growth

2)      Crossing branches that rub together – one of the two should be removed

3)      Undesirable growth – suckers at the base of a plant, limbs encroaching on sidewalks, etc.

4)      To encourage flowering – by thinning at the base or rejuvenation.  Proper methods of pruning to encourage flowering will be discussed in more detail in a later blog.

How To Prune – To Be Continued

About Urban Gardens, Inc.:

Urban Gardens provides landscape design and consulting services to residential clients whose projects range from historic renovations to new subdivisions with a blank slate. Sarah Christian owns and operates Urban Gardens in the internationally recognized Stapleton Development in Denver, Colorado. She received her Masters degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of Colorado at Denver in 1995 and has worked in Colorado since that time. She is licensed by the state of Colorado and is a member of the American Society of Landscape Architects. You can visit her web page at www.urbangardensinc.com