Spring-blooming azaleas should be pruned right after blooming before new buds set for next year’s show. (Photos by Heather Kirk-Ballard/LSU AgCenter)
Summer-blooming plants such as Lime Sizzler firebush can be trimmed anytime to control growth or keep a particular shape. Flowers form on new growth.
Buds set on last year’s growth on flowering trees such as this Japanese magnolia should not be pruned until after they finish blooming in the spring.
Pruning intimidates some gardeners. When to prune and when not to prune? It can be scary.
For trees and shrubs that are grown for their flowers, you must consider when they bloom before you decide when to prune them. Prune at the wrong time, and many of our spring-blooming shrubs and trees will not put on their much-anticipated spring flower show.