The Q&A Archives: tree/shrub

Question: When would I prune my beautyberry and fringe tree?
Why would my oakleaf hydrangea not is 3 years old...beutiful foliage but no flowers?

Answer: Callicarpa or beautyberry is usually trimmed back in the early spring to remove winter damage as needed and to restore a symmetrical look to the shrub. Fringe tree or Chionanthus does not need much if any pruning with the exception of tidying any broken, dead or diseased branches. That can be done when you notice the damage. Oakleaf hydrangea may fail to bloom in your area if it is planted in an exposed location; the buds are set on wood that grew the previous year and may be killed by winter cold. Another reason oakleaf hydrangea may fail to bloom is pruning at the wrong time. Pruning in spring removes older blooming wood. Planting in too much shade, or overfertilizing with nitrogen may also limit blooming on the oakleaf hydrangea. Finally, in my experience in nothern areas it does take this shrub several years to become established and gain the strength needed to bloom so maybe this year it will bloom for you.

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