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I have a very large old prostrate juniper (maybe 15 to 20 feet across) which has been neglected and partially covered with other plants for many years. We are now clearing the area and I was wondering whether it would be OK to cut back the less healthy branches (some have only a few leaves, some none at all) or whether this would damage the entire plant.
I have 2 prostrate types out front. I have to keep them pruned so that they don't overhang the pavement. One is doing nicely, the other is going brown. Also there is a disease that is affecting juniper at the moment, so I don't know if it is windburn, pruning or disease that has got to the unhealthy one. Both were doing fine for about 10 years.
I'd cut off all the brown, right back to the main trunk if necessary. The see if it looks worth keeping. They won't regrow from anywhere that's turned brown.
I've done 2. One was a success, the other looked awful and I scrapped it.
I cut mine back when it starts to spread too far, it's survived so far (about 17 years). If it's got dead or dying branches, you've got nothing to lose by removing them.
Thanks. I'll cut it back and see what happens. Just have to persuade OH not to eliminate it all together. He's a bit of a slash-and-burn man and is hard to keep under control!
Aren't they all SG. Never happier than when they're hacking stuff back to a 'manageable' size, and every shrub looks the same......