The Q&A Archives: Privet bare root

Question: I have just planted 75 bare root privet, how soon will they come to life and what can I expect this first season. How soon do I prune and how hard.

Answer: It may take several weeks for them to leaf out, depending on the weather. (Be sure to keep them watered if there is no rain.) Their growth rate will depend to some extent on the quality of the soil, but they could certainly grow several feet if left untrimmed. While they are small, you should prune them roughly every time they grow six inches to force branching. Also be sure to maintain a slight "batter" or slope so that they are wider at the base than at the top. Stop pruning in early fall so the latest growth can harden off for winter, start again early next spring.

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