Pruning Shrubs

Pruning Shrubs

by Jeff Wasielewski

When pruning shrubs, one can take a more heavy-handed approach to the art of pruning. Shrubs do not need to support massive branches and can therefore lose a large amount of leaf area at one time without the danger of the plant growing back too quickly and creating weak, poorly attached branches. Depending on the shrub, you can often prune severely without damage. Plants such as the firebush and croton can often be pruned back to a height of one foot with the eventual goal of creating a more complex and full looking plant. Pruning cuts on shrubs are generally heading cuts which in this case can be called shearing cuts. Some shrubs may only require a few cuts to maintain height and health.  


A leggy shrub is a good canidate for pruning.


Some shrubs can be aggresively pruned.


Regrowth after an agressive pruning.


The leggy shrub is now full and lush.