Pruning improves my “growth”

My husband is just itching to get out in the yard with the pruning equipment, not that he necessarily has any idea of how to prune things. He just wants to get rid of any branches or leaves that might impede his ability to cut the grass. If fact, I would be willing to bet he’d “prune” my flowerbeds if he thought it wouldn’t result in his sleeping on the couch for the rest of his days. (Admittedly, their locations were not well thought out on my part.)

As my “hedg-ucation” at Flowerland continues, I’ve discovered there is actually an art and science to pruning your plants. And, after reading the Flowerland care sheet on pruning (, it is an art and science that my mother apparently studied. (Not that I would ever doubt you, Mom!)

When I was growing up, we had hedges along the back and one side of the backyard in front of the fence. Like clock-work, my mom would send my dad out with the hedge a few times each summer to “trim” the hedges. Well one year she saw something she didn’t like (I’m guessing they were getting too dense or overgrown) and announced she was “cutting them back.” I thought she was nuts and “just knew” she was going to kill them (I was a teenager at the time). According to Flowerland’s pruning care sheet, what she did was “stump” the hedges. She cut them back to about half their original size then began the arduous task of thinning them out. I remember her being on her hands and knees pruning what I now know to be the oldest, thickest stems. Needless to say, within a few summers the hedges were as tall and lush as they ever were – and probably a lot healthier.

I guess sometimes Mother does know best. If you are planning on doing some pruning and have some, be sure to check out the pruning care sheet. Lots of good info plus helpful illustrations.

Until next time…get out and garden! And have a safe and happy Labor Day weekend!

Mary Gold