When should you prune multi-stemmed flowering shrubs?

Q. Should I prune all my multi-stemmed flowering shrubs at the same time as the forsythia?

A. The best time to prune flowering shrubs depends on two things:

  1. What time of year they form flower buds, and
  2. Whether or not you want blossoms this year

Shrubs in Mid-Michigan that flower prior to June 10 are most likely flowering on buds produced in the fall of the prior year.

If you prune these shrubs in the fall, winter, or spring (before flowering), you’ll cut off all the flower buds so they will not flower this year. Don’t worry! The plant is fine – it just will produce few or no flowers.

Shrubs in Mid-Michigan that flower after June 10 are probably flowering on new buds that were formed in May and June of the current year. These are fine to prune while they’re dormant (in winter or early spring); they’ll still bloom beautifully this summer.

A mentor of mine made the statement, “The ultimate landscape architect is the maintenance person.” Your landscape will benefit from how you care for and maintain your plants.

Contact Bay Landscaping if you have any additional questions or if you want to schedule landscape maintenance for your property.


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Answer Provided By ...

Jerry Somalski

Jerry is a Landscape Designer, Project Manager, and the President of Bay Landscaping. He began learning about plants and landscape design as a young boy, hoeing in the family nursery and tagging along with the landscape crews who taught him the tools and methods of the trade. After earning a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration at Central Michigan University, he returned to the family business. Jerry has an enthusiastic yet practical approach to landscape design, focused on choosing the right plants (ones that thrive in the mid-Michigan climate) for the right place to create sustainable and spectacular landscapes. He loves to share what he knows with gardeners throughout Michigan! Learn more about Jerry >>