The Q&A Archives: When Is A Good Time To Prune A Hibiscus

Question: We have a large tropical hibiscus that we bring in each winter. We would like to know how and when to prune it.

Answer: If your hibiscus has become leggy, you can prune it back quite hard. It will readily resprout. Then, you can pinch new growth to keep plants bushy. Generally, the best time to do dramatic pruning is in the spring, before the plant''s major growth period. However, if it's in good form, you don't need to prune it at all unless you want to maintain or reduce its size. I like to cut back one or two of the longest, leggiest branches of my hibiscus several times a year. Cut branches back to another branch, or to a bud. The plant will continually resprout, and you won't have to do a one-time heavier, disfiguring pruning.

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