The Q&A Archives: Pruning a Euryops

Question: I have a Monrovia Euryops that was just given to me.It appears to be dormant.I live in zone 6 so I am keeping it on an unheated enclosed porch for the winter. I can't tell at this point if it will survive because it has not been well cared for. My question is-if it does-how do I prune it (it is tree shaped with a trunk)and when-also when should it be re-potted.

Answer: Normally one would repot if needed and do a seasonal pruning in very early spring, giving it a shaping and removing up to a third of the overall branch volume or bulk. Dead material however can be removed at any time. Euryops should be evergreen, so I am not certain your plant is still alive. It will not tolerate much cold -- especially when grown in a container, so depending on how cold the unheated porch actually gets, it may be dead. (Typical temperature recommended in winter for this plant grown in a container is bright light in a cool room with a 45 degree minimum; soil kept just barely damp; no fertilizer until spring.) You can check by looking for green inside the bark; live wood is also somewhat flexible. Dead wood will be discolored, brittle, and snap off in your hand. Begin at the branch tips and prune off any dead wood until you reach live wood. Then shape it somewhat symmetrically as needed. If all of the branches are dead it is probably better to start again with a new plant. Good luck!

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