Homeowners seem to shy away from tasks like trimming. There are several reasons why they choose to avoid trimming, probably, there is a possibility that they may harm or damage their plant. Could it be that they have no clue at all about what it entails? Leaving shrubs unattended to, until they grow wild and unruly with no leaves and flowers makes your yard or lawn unattractive and repulsive!
Shrubs are woody plants with several perennial stems and generally have a mature height not more than 15 feet. Shrubs can either be deciduous or evergreen and may stand erect or may lay low to the ground level. Shrubs, bushes and hedges are sometimes interchangeably used but they differ. While shrubs are woody plants with more than one stem. Bushes are shrubs with branches springing up from or near the ground level. A hedge is a row of plants. When shrubs are planted closely together in such a way that they form a linear row, we refer to them as a hedge. Shrubs can be a hedge but not all hedges are shrubs. Trees can also be a hedge.
Shrub trimming is the process of cutting back shrubs for shape, look and size. You may allow your shrubs to grow naturally and you can trim them into formal shape or topiary. However, you don’t have to trim them frequently, once in a year keeps them going. The type of shrub (deciduous or evergreen), the desired appearance (formal or informal) and the level of maturity, have a lot to do with the technique of trimming that will be used.
It is not far-fetched that shrubs can make a yard, garden and lawn more impressive and beautiful. When they are neglected to grow on their own, they grow wild, unruly and messy. You wouldn’t want to create a bad lasting impression on visitors or colleagues, would you? In order to make shrubs look well-maintained, trimming them is not an option but a necessity. So, we’ll answer questions regarding “when, how and why” your shrubs need that haircut. So, wise decisions will be made when you realize what the task entails.
HOW TO TRIM SHRUBS
Start trimming by removing dead, diseased, damaged, and overgrown branches. Trimming may sometimes require cutting back branches and in some cases, removal of the entire branches at the base will be needed. The following procedure can make the task an interesting one for you:
- Select and Disinfect trimming tools: First thing first, trimming tools should be rightly selected and disinfected. While some homeowners and landscapers want to use gas or electric-power shear on every dick and harry, some shrubs only require hand trimming. Hand-held instruments such as loppers, hand-held pruner and your small curved saw must be disinfected before you lay them on those branches. Get them cleaned in nine parts water and one part bleach. With that, you re more than ready for trimming.
- Reduce overgrown branches: Cut away the massive overgrown branches. Reduce wild branches from the base using your hedge trimmer or better still, a shear. The essence of this is to stimulate new growth on the side plus, to curb sticking out of overgrown branches.
- Center thinning out: Do some clearing out near the center. Cut back any multiple overgrown branches around the center to the base. This helps light to get to the branches at the bottom. Try as much as possible to avoid cutting center branches that are not overgrown so that you won’t damage your plant. However, ensure that the natural shape of the plant is maintained. Also, keep the base as wide as possible if not, they will die off when the lower branches become too shaded by the upper ones.
- Remove dead, diseased and damaged branches: Cut every unhealthy part away, like rotten, dead and broken branches. Keep as many healthy parts that you can see and remove only the sick-looking branches.
- Avoid over trimming: Ensure that you don’t remove more than one-third of the trimmed shrub. Aggressive trimming weakens and exposes the plant to diseases and pests. As soon as you noticed that you might be over trimming the plant, level up the shrub and tidy up from there.
Once you apply the right trimming technique, nothing should stop your shrub from looking beautiful all year round.
WHEN SHOULD SHRUBS BE TRIMMED?
Trimming is key to a healthy shrub. Paraventure you intend to give your shrub a haircut, you want to ensure you are doing it at the right time. Ultimately, shrub type is a vital determinant of when trimming should be done. The state of health, species of shrub and adaptable weather condition dictates how often they need to be trimmed.
Evergreen Shrubs: Evergreen shrubs can be trimmed at almost any time of the year. Selecting a perfect time to trim them isn’t such a big deal because they don’t have an “off-season”. However, the very best time will be in late March or early April. At this time, they are dormant and they don’t have many leaves on them. Trimming in the fall is absolutely wrong.
You can as well trim lightly during summer when plant growth is at its peak. This will lessen the job in winter and as such, keep them neat.
Deciduous Shrub: Flowering shrubs will do better when trimmed shortly after blooming. You wouldn’t want to interrupt the plant bloom cycle because flower productivity depends wholly on timing. For blooming shrubs, trim them in the winter when they are dormant to avoid stunting flower growth.
Practically, shrubs that bloom on old wood (the ones that had their buds last season) should be trimmed shortly after they flower while those that bloom on new wood ( the ones that bud in the current season) should be trimmed before they flower, that is, in winter or early spring. Injury sustained by plants in spring heal faster, forming a callus which impedes moisture loss.
As a matter of fact, trimming frequently is the best way to keep shrubs healthy intact. The minimum plan should be like twice a year. Shrubs can become an eyesore when they are not cared for and can make your landscape messy and untidy.
REASONS FOR SHRUB TRIMMING
If you don’t know why you want to get your shrub trimmed, it’s better not to trim at all than doing it wrongly. You should have at least one of the reasons below before going ahead to give them a haircut.
- Trim to maintain a healthy plant: plant health should be your prerogative when you want to trim. When you cut back shrubs to remove dead, broken and diseased branches, indirectly you are making sure that plant is in its perfect state of health.
- Trim to constrain plant growth: you trim to keep growth to a more manageable height. You can level shrub height with a hedge trimmer, which is favorable because a smoother finish can be achieved when the top is run over.
- Trim to train the plant: plant can be trained to form a specific shape. Literally, you can train a plant to grow against a vertical surface.
- Trim to promote the quality of flower: trimming a blooming shrub enhances the quality of flower that is produced.
- To achieve an attractive landscape: trimming shrubs on your lawn or in your card or garden give visitors an impression about your home.
LESSEN YOUR HASSLE! HIRE A PRO!!
Are you worried, stressed out and worked up about the sight of your overgrown shrubs?
Do you still don’t get it right even after looking into the ‘how’ to trim shrubs? If it’s a yes, why not leave the task to experts that do it better!
Leinad Tree Service gets it done even better than the way you want it. We achieve this by
- taking the time time of year into consideration when trimming,
- maintaining sharp tools in excellent condition,
- making sure we hand trim varieties that require additional care.