The Q&A Archives: pruning rose of sharons

Question: a friend of mine justed moved to a place in nw arkansas that has many rose of sharons. they havn't been cared for in many years. i believe it is still early enough to cut the dead branches back. however, my husband, has informed her otherwise. could you please settle this for us so that my friend may fully enjoy these beautiful shrubs. thanx so much. ilde0516

Answer: Rose of Sharon is typically pruned in late winter or early spring to remove winter damaged or killed branches. These can be pruned out now as they will not come back to life. You could also do a little more minimal pruning to restore a bit of symmetrical look to the plant, if needed.

Some gardeners routinely give Rose of Sharon a severe or hard pruning every spring (although it is not necessary to do so.) I think it is a bit late in the season for that type of pruning. This plant blooms on new growth of the season, so pruning this late could really delay flowering.

I realize this is a partly this and partly that kind of answer but I hope it helps.

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