Winter shrub and tree pruning

Winter shrub and tree pruning

Now that the winter is here (well kind of, at the time of writing!) it’s a great moment to tackle some of the larger tasks that your garden presents you with, or better still get someone to help you do it.

The winter months are an ideal time to prune most trees and shrubs, for a number of reasons………

1. During the winter, most woody shrubs and trees are dormant as are many of the diseases and insects that can potentially invade pruning cuts and cause problems. Hence winter is a much better time then summer for this activity.

2. After leaves have fallen, it is much easier to see a plants form and structure, and as such, dead, damaged or diseased branches (the 3 D’s to look for when we do a renovative prune) are easier to notice when not obscured by foliage.

3. Winter pruning is good for your plants, as it leaves them with extra root energy reserves to heal wounds and support vigorous spring growth.

4. Thinning the canopy or the base of the plant lets light in and improves air circulation, which helps to reduce the impact of pests and diseases and as such will lead to a reduction in the need for treatments, organic or chemical (the latter we are very keen on avoiding at Huertocity)

5. Also for many vigorous plants such as Wisteria or Buddleja, correct pruning will encourage prolific flowering and enable you to train them into the desired shape.

Just to give you an idea, the following common garden plants all benefit from winter pruning…….

Fig trees – any time between December and January

Roses – most varieties of roses will benefit from a winter prune, as they tend to accumulate lots of dead wood through out the year.

Apple and pear trees – throughout the winter season

Clematis – from late January to February

Grapevines – from December to January

Wisteria – needs to be pruned twice a year, once in the summer and again in December or January.

Raspberries and fruit bushes – depends on the variety

Many species of deciduous shrubs and trees benefit from either a renovative prune if needed (after some neglect or disease/pest attack) or thinning out to help keep them healthy for the coming year.


Don’t hesitate to call us if you need any assistance with this task.