The Q&A Archives: winter care

Question: This Spring I planted a Petit Bleu Shrub. Can you give me some detailed info on shearing this plant. Also, should I tie it to a stack to encourage straight growth? Any tips for winter care.
Thank you very much for any help...

Answer: Caryopteris is normally a somewhat rounded semi-shrub, I do not know of any way to make it grow more upright. It does not need to be staked or tied. In cold winter areas (including yours) it is grown as a so-called cutback shrub and treated somewhat like an herbaceous perennial. This means it is trimmed back very hard in late winter/early spring each year. This removes any winter damaged stems and encourages dense, vigorous, new growth for the coming season. Since it is treated this way, there is no shearing involved. There is no special care beyond a heavy mulch applied over the root area in late fall after freezing weather has started. ENjoy your Caryopteris!

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