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Peachy

pruning bushes

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How much of a pruning can u do to a bush without killing it?

I live ina rental and I'm responsible for the basic lawncare....I have two different kind of bushes, I do not know the specific names. One is darn thorny and I hate it...Its some kind of Japanese thorny bushes...other one reminds me of evergreen bushes....I like the "evergreen" ones.....I would love to just "gut" the "thorny" one to where I dont have to deal with teh dang thorns for rest of the season....

Any tips?!?!? Thanks!

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If the thorny ones are red or maroon I think your talking about Barbary. You can cut those back to half the size or 12 to 18 inch high, pull out any dead stems and thin the bigger stems out and will become a healthier shrub next year.

To trim the evergreens. Take the longest branch and follow it inside the shrub and cut it off at a joint. Before you cut move to the side to see if it leaves a hole. If it does cut less off then you origanally planned so not leave a big hole. Repeat this until you get the shrub close to the size you like. It is not recomended to shear evergreens(except Arboevitae).When you shear you promote end growth then down the line the shrub gets to thick and starts dying out in the middle.

Hope this helps.

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All shrubs are can be "burned down". Burn down is a technique where you simply cut the entire shrub to the ground. This wont kill it. It will remove all the woody matter.

The shrub still has a huge amount of energy stored in the root system. That energy will be used to bring this shrub back to a full and beautiful state. It will come back quickly and look better than ever.

For best success this should be done before Memorial Day or After Labor Day. Its something I due regularly with amazing success. Yes, its crazy and drastic but so are the results. If you try it and it doesnt work I'll help find you a new shrub.

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Give that Barberry the one cut prune.

Sure it's nice to have a red color in the landscaping, but to fuss with the thorns is a complete hassle.

I agree with Quetico, get rid of the Barberry and if anyone says anything, we'll get you in touch with a new bush.

Pretty quick most of the places will be running an end of year clearance to clear out remaining stock.

The evergreens are a time consumer to trim. If you've got some scragglers that are higher than the rest, but in general have a decently shaped bush, then you can trim those scragglers. If it's one that's completely out of control, then you'll have to slowly trim it back. If you do it all at one time, you'll hinder the bush.

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I have four burning bushes that up until this year have done fairly well. This year there is a lot of mostly dead branches with some leaves lower down and one or two new branches that have grown about two feet higher than the rest of the bush. If I do the "burn down" as mentioned by "Quetico", will they come back ok in the spring?

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Nope, Trim out the dead lower to height you want and thin out any cross branches or rubbing branches.

I am not a fan of the burn down. The Burning Bush(Euonymous) is actually consiserd a tree shrub and should be taken care of differantly than a shrub like a barberry or spirea or pottintilla type.

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Retired- They will come back just fine. If not, I know of a few places to get you some big burning bushes. Cutting them to the ground simply removes all the unsightly dead matter. It does not to the roots. The massive amounts of energy in the root system will send out a ton of new growth.

I've done this method with a types of shrubs with great success. I've never lost one.

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Quetico I dont think you know what a burning bush is you can not cut that to the ground!My Twenty three years in the landscape indrustry says no you cant. So your saying you can cut atree down it will come back the same.

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I have four burning bushes that up until this year have done fairly well. This year there is a lot of mostly dead branches with some leaves lower down and one or two new branches that have grown about two feet higher than the rest of the bush. If I do the "burn down" as mentioned by "Quetico", will they come back ok in the spring?

Might want to look into the cause of this problem first other wise you'll be in the same "boat" next year as well. it could be insects attacking the roots, it could be bugs eating the stems or foliage or it could be simply dry ground/lack of water. Cutting wont do anything if there is a disease or insects attacking the plant.

I have noticed that the dry weather the last 2 seasons has either just shown the insect damage to a further degree or they just thrive more in dryer climates. A lot of lawns in my neck of the woods are showing signs of insect damage. Once treated, the grass/shrubs start to thrive again.

Just another perspective.

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Quetico I dont think you know what a burning bush is you can not cut that to the ground!My Twenty three years in the landscape indrustry says no you cant. So your saying you can cut atree down it will come back the same.

I'm with croix too.

Sure, if you cut a living tree down, there will be "suckers" or shoots that will come from the root, but you're waiting 10-15 years just to get a decent tree.

If you were to do a one cut prune on a burning bush, certainly it would start to come back next year, but you're talking about a bush that's probably 2-3-4' tall, and another 2-3-4' in diameter if it's somewhat mature, and it's just not going to look like that at this time next year.

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MuleShack makes a good point on insects or diseases.

To combat insects douse the soil around the base to 18 to 24 inches of burning bush with cygon at recomended rates on label.

I do think though it might of been lack of water and you will be ok next year. We did have at least 2 years in a row of dry conditions.

By thinning out the dead and cross branches you will be letting in air and sunlight into the center of shrub thus difusing any fungis or disease problems. And also by cutting back and thinning you will promote knew growth to fill in where the dead was.

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Thanks for the responses. Maybe this year I will just trim them down to about two feet after the leaves fall and see how they come back next spring. If they don't look to good I can always yank them out and start over.

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I am very well aware of what Euonymus alatus is. All I'm saying is that I have had great success burning them down. I did this in early July with success. They dont come back as fast as others but they will come back.

I dont not recommend cutting shrubs to the ground in early July unless absolutely required.

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we have several Barberry on the golf course that I work on. Every late fall we trim some of them down to about 2 inches and they come back great. We have them in stragetic places where we don't want people walking thru.

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I am very well aware of what Euonymus alatus is. All I'm saying is that I have had great success burning them down. I did this in early July with success. They don't come back as fast as others but they will come back.

I don't not recommend cutting shrubs to the ground in early July unless absolutely required.

I don't mean to step on your toes. I think we should make it clear there are different varieties of the Euonymous Alatus (Height 10ft-12ft Width 8ft-12ft)(Dwarf;H 5ft-6ft W 5-8ft)AKA. Burning Bush or winged Euonymus not to be mistaken for the Euonymus fortunei Two very different specimums.

The fortunei is considered a shrubby ground cover that ranges 3ft tall to 3 ft wide To 1 ft high 2 ft wide depending on variety.

Retired on Osakis I think you have the right aproach good luck

Again Quetico sorry for stepping on your toes

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