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Pruning Evergreens

You can tame overgrown evergreens blocking your views or creeping over walks with a bit of pruning.  And get the best results for your effort with proper timing and the right pruning strategies. 

Pines are terminal growers sending new growth from branch tips.  As the buds expand they look like candles before the needles expand.  Control their size by removing 1/2 to 2/3 the candles in spring.

Spruce can also be pruned in spring.  Prune the stem tips back to a healthy bud.  Make the cuts on a slight angle just above the bud. 

Arborvitae and yews can be pruned in spring before growth begins or in early summer after new growth has emerged.  Prune back to just above a healthy bud or adjoining branch.

Prune longer branches on junipers back to shorter branches to reduce the size, hide the cuts, and maintain the plants natural shape.  Tip prune, if needed, in summer for additional size control.

A bit more information:  Minimize pruning by selecting and planting evergreens suited to the location.  Look for dwarf evergreens whose mature size will fit the available space.  Avoid surprises and possible disappointment by checking the tag for the plant’s mature size before purchasing it or any plant.

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