Answer: Aucuba has a naturally tidy shape so it really does not need routine pruning. You would remove any broken or damaged branches as soon as they occur, and if you need to control the size you can trim it back in the late winter and/or in June. It is better to reach into the plant and remove individual overly long branches than to shear it off. This helps retain its natural shape somewhat. I would not prune it this late in the season as pruning stimulates new gorwth that may not harden sufficiently before winter. (If you just want a couple of tip cuttings though that is probably fine.)
It is possible to root tip cuttings, according to Michael Dirr's Manual of Hardy Landscape Plants cuttings can be rooted nearly any time of year. For transplanting purposes however I think the best time to take the cuttings is probably June, that way they have several months to become rooted and you can plant them in late August so they have time to root and become established in the ground before winter.
I hope this helps.
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