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Extreme pruning?

Extreme pruning?
Posted by Marcia from IL on 2009-08-25 12:22:00

My husband and I just purchased a home with a trio of out-of-control evergreen hedges by the drive. Currently, they obstruct the view enough to be a considerable hazard. Neighbors say the six-foot-tall bushes have been around for 10-15 years. We would like to keep them, just trimmed down to half their current height. Would pruning them down so far kill the plants, or would we be better off just removing them entirely and planting fresh?

Thanks so much for your help!
  • Extreme Pruning
    Posted by Heidi from WI on 2010-01-04 06:20:00

    Whenever you trim more than 1/3 of the plant at a time, you risk shocking (and killing) the plant.

    It would be more advisable to trim up to 1/3 for 2-3 years in a row. Keep in mind that this trimming will need to continue once it's started.

    If you decide to chop the offending shrubs off anyway -- provide extra water for the first month to prevent shock.

    I understand your concern about the visibility. I hope my advice helps you to make a decision.

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