June Gardening Tips – Summer Pruning

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 13,492
    Horticulturist Mitch Baker shares some tips on pruning trees and shrubs for June.

    Mitch Baker: Hi! I am Mitch Baker with American Plant. We're talking about great gardening tips for June.

    Right now, we're going to talk about pruning trees and shrubs for summer. So let's get started with Azalea. Now that it's finished blooming, a lot of its new growth has flushed out. We just want to bring it back into a more uniform profile. So we're going to start with the tallest branches that exceed the profile. We're just going to follow them down into the body of the Azalea at a logical point and prune those away. And when you are pruning Azaleas, you don't have to be real concerned about where you are pruning get on the branch. Always best to try and find a logical point where its branching out, but Azaleas have the ability to leaf out just about anywhere up and down the stem where you might prune it.

    So we're just taking it down into the body of the plant to give it a more natural look so that it doesn't look like its all been pruned at the same point. This will reduce it in size, create some additional side branching and at the same time produce some more uniform shape. Now that we have this Azalea back into shape, let's move on to this large Rhododendron. This Rhododendron now that it's pretty well finished blooming, we're going to disbud or remove these spent flower parts. This is a technique that will produce more flowers next year.

    Now on a large Rhododendron like this, it's not practical of course to try and remove all of the spent flowers but Rhododendrons spend a great deal of energy in seed production that is actually a waste of energy when we want more flower production next year. So we're going to go ahead and take some of these spent flower parts off and that just involves a gentle twist, being careful not to go too far down on the stem. We're just removing the flower part and its best to do this when there's still a bit of color or petal on the stem, that way the plant is not wasting any energy on seed production.

    We'll do that across the front of the Rhododendron here where it's most visible. That way we'll be sure to have plenty of flowers right across the face of the Rhododendron next year.

    Now we have a Hydrangea, we're going to do a little pruning on. There's been some dieback from the winter that is evident. We can clearly see that now so now it's a good time to trim that sort of dieback out but that's the only trimming we want to do on a Hydrangea at this time a year. In order to reduce this plant in size, if needed, the only time to trim this Hydrangea back and this is a big leaf Hydrangea, Hydrangea Macrophylla; the Mophead type Hydrangea. The only time to trim back a Hydrangea like this will be in about four weeks and that's when its still in full bloom, but that's the time you have to trim it to reduce it in size so that it can then put some growth on to carry over to next year. So that's how we take care of some pruning in June. Next, we'll talk about Summer Pest Control.