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I have never fully understood when a shrub should be pruned I am now in my later years and find it difficult to do everything in the garden I will now have to pay for a gardener to do some of the work and I will want him or her to prune my shrubs. To keep the costs down can anyone please suggest what month or months in the year it would be best to do this work

It does depend on the shrub, so the best thing to do is visit the RHS site and type 'prune' and the shrub name into the search box.  As a rule of thumb, shrubs which flower early in the year should be pruned after flowering.  Evergreens don't need much pruning but if necessary then do it in mid-spring.  Cut back overgrown shrubs in the winter.

The RHS site is here: 


I prune most shrubs just after flowering. Some you do at other times but for the majority that is the best time.

If you learn when to prune each shrub it will enable you to understand how easy it really is, generally.

As said before. "after flowering" is a good rule of thumb but there  are differences here too.  Ribes ...flowering currant......can be "pruned" after flowering but I simply use shears to cut to shape.  Deutzias, forsythias, mock orange, etc. need more careful and correct pruning.....but still simple.  Cut out flowered stems immediately after flowering.  The odd branch can be removed to ground level to keep bushes young and controlled.

Some shrubs respond to hard pruning....buddleias....but others like the brooms will die if cut back that hard.  

Best to understand what you grow, how they grow and flower and not to view pruning as a fearful procedure.  It's not

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