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What to prune in spring

Spring can be the busiest time of year for gardeners. Once day length and temperatures increase, our plants surge into growth. In addition to soil preparation, seed sowing and planting, there is also plenty of pruning to be done. Dogwood, lavender and sea holly are just some of the plants that should be pruned in spring.

Colourful stems

Shrubs with colourful stems

Shrubs with colourful stems. Decidous shrubs that benefit from hard pruning, include: Cornus alba, C. sericea and C.sanguinea; ornamental rubus; willows. Use a pruning saw to remove the previous year's stems right down to the base. This will encourage strong, young growth that has the most vividly coloured bark.


Summer-flowering shrubs

Summer-flowering shrubs. Decidous shrubs that flower on new growth include: Buddleja davidii; French lavender; Lavatera; hebes. Use secateurs to cut back hard to reduce the size and tidy the shape. This will encourage vigorous, flowering shoots. Prune any shrubs that flower after July, in spring.


Herbaceous perennials

Herbaceous perennials. Plants with decorative winter seed heads or stems, include: deciduous grasses; sea hollies; sedums; thistles. Use secateurs to tidy perennials and ornamental grasses by removing seed heads and stems that were left for decorative purposes or as a winter habitat for insects.

Winter jasmine

Winter-flowering shrubs

Winter-flowering shrubs. Evergreen and deciduous shrubs and climbers include: Lonicera x purpusii; Viburnum x bodnantense; winter jasmine. Use secateurs to deadhead and trim into shape. This will encourage new growth that will flower next year.

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Talkback: What to prune in spring
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MirandaF 05/03/2015 at 23:01

Any advice please on pruning fuchsias (hardy and half hardy) and salvias?

MirandaF 05/03/2015 at 23:02

Any advice please on pruning fuchsias (hardy and half hardy) and salvias?

Dave Morgan 06/03/2015 at 08:48

I don't know where you are Miranda, but I won't be pruning my hardy fuchsia's for another 2 - 3 weeks yet. The weather can be unpredictable at this time of year and this mild spell may not continue. Leaving them won't do any harm and it will protect them. If there's lots of new growth then take cuttings as an insurance policy.

Half hardy fuchsia's should be left for another month unless they are under glass.

Busy-Lizzie 06/03/2015 at 09:18

I prune my hardy fuschias near the end of March when I cut them almost down to the ground.

Lovetogarden 07/03/2015 at 01:06

Yes I agree with the advice already given. I also give them a feed with a general fertiliser at the same time,just to them a boost.

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