A row of elegant shrubs may serve as a tasteful border between adjacent properties and an efficient barrier to keeping pets and animals out of the way. Shrubs may also be an important part of attractive landscape design. Yet, without regular care, particularly pruning, shrubs may transform from a beautiful border into an unguarded eye.
Most people assume that pruning is a summer and fall season task. Although certain types of trees and shrubs are best pruned during these seasons, there are shrubs that benefit from winter pruning. January and February are some of the best time to prune deciduous and coniferous shrubs. Pruning these shrubs in the winter when they are dormant revitalizes them so that they grow strong and healthy in the spring.
Pruning your shrubs is a task you can do yourself, but it must be done correctly and cautiously to avoid causing damage to the plants. If you’re not happy with pruning shrubs yourself, you can call our professional arborists to do the job.
Why winter trimming is important
Pruning your deciduous and coniferous shrubs in winter has the following advantages:
- The pruning cuts are less likely to be harmed by insects or diseases that are inactive during the winter.
- Damaged or diseased branches and the overall structure of the shrub are more noticeable without foliage.
- Winter pruning gives shrubs extra energy and stronger roots that encourage spring growth.
- Pruning too late in the summer or in the fall will lead to a new growth that will be destroyed by the winter weather. This is not a matter of winter pruning.
Best Trimming Practices
There are two forms of pruning: by hand or by power shears.
- Power Shears: While the use of power shears is quicker, simpler and cheaper, it also harms shrubs over time. Up until they have been withdrawn and replaced, which is more costly. Power shearing focuses on the outside of the plant and cuts each branch to the same height or width. The effect is a shapely shrub with a thick outer layer with little to no inner foliage.
- Hand Pruning: Pruning a shrub with a pair of hand clippers helps to achieve more healthy results. Our arborists may determine which branches to prune and where to prune them for the best health of the shrub. Opening the outside of the plant allows for more sunshine. The outcome is a more natural formed and looking shrub, thus retaining the specified size of the shrub.
Manually pruned shrubs tend to bloom more regularly. The same shrubs live longer and are less vulnerable to insects and diseases. It’s not rare for healthy shrubs to live well over forty years.