The Q&A Archives: trimming a juniper

Question: I am wanting to clean up my 2 juniper bushes.....shape them in the shape of a bonsia or a topiarie....not sure what tools I will need or how to get started.

Answer: You can prune your junipers now but you'll want to take special care not to prune them back too much at any one time. You can usually trim or shear off about one third of the live growth from a landscape shrub without causing too much stress. With junipers you'll want to avoid cutting back to bare wood. No new growth will appear on the bare stems. So, if you concentrate your pruning on the ends of the branches, you should be able to hand prune or shear your junipers. You can use hedge trimmers or hand pruners to trim your junipers back. Best wishes with your project!

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