This is a guide to
the handling of plants and trees which we maintain in Sun City West. We are not
trained gardeners, nor do we have the time to devote to the ultimate care, but
we do want to do an acceptable job. This document will help your team accomplish
REASONS FOR PRUNING
Reasons for pruning are simple; to maintain height and shape, to cut out dead wood, crossing branches, and to stimulate growth. After one prunes, the root system is larger than the plant which will stimulate new growth and in time will double the size of the plant.
Unless it is for safety reasons, NEVER PRUNE A PLANT WHILE THE PLANT IS BLOOMING.
Always remember you are dealing with a living plant and common sense is the key word to good pruning performance. NO PRUNING IS BETTER THAN OVER PRUNING. With over pruning, a plant can go into shock and never recover, but die as a result. So, please prune only what needs to be pruned.
We hope this
document is informative and helpful. It does not include everything you need to
know, but is meant to be a guide. All PRIDES involved in pruning trees and plant
in their section should be familiar with its contents.
RED BIRD OF PARADISE
Prune twice; once after the plant stops flowering to prune dead flower stalks. The second is done after leaves have fallen and the bush has become dormant. At that time all branches are cut back to 6 to 24 inches from the ground. Some of the branches should be 6 inches with the other varying. Be sure to clean up debris and remove dead branches around base of plant. When branches become a traffic hazard, they should be removed regardless of the time of year.
SILVER CASSIA (SENNA)
Prune lightly twice a year; once following flowering to avoid seed pods and again in early Fall. This will also promote new growth and bushy form. Plants are most attractive if only selectively pruned or thinned. Hedge trimmers ruin the character and reduce the number of flowers. If plant becomes woody, prune back up to 50 percent of growth into natural form late January thru February.
SAGE (VIOLET SILVERLEAF/TEXAS SAGE)
Do not subject these plants to hedge trimmers unless you want a formal look. Using hedge trimmers ruins the natural shape. Leaves will form thickly on the exterior and sometimes leave large bare spots. Shearing also reduces flower production. If plant is too woody or is overgrown, cut back to 6-12 inches in late January thru February. However, if you use trimmers, only TRIM LIGHTLY new growth and NEVER TRIM WHILE BLOOMING.
This plant cn be cut 6-8 inches across to maintain small plant late January thru February if desired. Remove debris around base of plant.
GRASSES (DEER/PINK FLAMINGO
Cut back in late January thru February close to the ground every one to three years to rejuvenate growth. Be sure to clean debris around plant base.
TECOMAS (ORANGE JUBILEE, YELLOW BELLS
Plant has no distinctive shape. For dense growth, more flowering wood and stronger stems, prune back after bloom in late spring. After time, growth may sprawl. Cut back by one-third to control in late January thru February.
RED (OR YELLOW) YUCCA
Do not trim with power trimmers. Do not trim them into balls as they will not be able to re-grow from trimmed areas. Thin primarily around outer edge by digging them out on the side. Cut out dead flower stalks as close to the base of the plant as possible when they are done blooming and dry.
This plant rarely requires pruning. Cut off frost damage in late January thru February. If the plant has excessive winter kill or becomes too woody, prune the entire plant back 6-12 inches from the ground in early spring.
Cut plants back in late January thru February to remove unsightly or dead leaves and branches to shape and encourage compact dense growth. In summer, encourage plant to bloom again quickly if clipped back LIGHTLY.
Should be kept trimmed, both in height and diameter. Trim tips LIGHTLY after bloom to groom. Shearing tops will encourage side branches to spread Take care not to trim plants back beyond the last bits of foliage and into the wood. Plants cut too far back will not sprout new growth.