The Q&A Archives: Flowering bushes

Question: Hello,
I have many flowering bushes that need trimming and shaping. I was told if I trim them in the fall, they won't flower in the spring. What is the right time of year to trim them down? I have Rhododendrons, and azaleas and I live in Connecticut.

Thank you.

Answer: What you've heard is correct in the cases of rhododendrons and azaleas. These plants should be trimmed immediately after the flowers are spent. They spend all summer developing flower and leaf buds for next spring's display. If you prune them now, you'll prune off the flower buds. Flowering shrubs should always be pruned immediately after the shrub has finished flowering. Spring flowering shrubs should be pruned in early summer; summer flowering shrubs should be pruned in fall; autumn and winter flowering shrubs can be pruned in the spring. Hope this clarifies things for you.

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