Last Updated: August 25, 2020 Cut back one-third of the oldest branches to the ground in late fall, midwinter or very early spring. Now that you know the basics of dogwood tree pruning, you can enjoy your trees without the worry of them becoming unsightly or sick. After that, hard prune them every March. Watering the tree after removing branches helps to ease the shock and reduce the stress it might suffer from. If it is healthy, it will likely respond with a large flush of new growth in the spring. This image is not<\/b> licensed under the Creative Commons license applied to text content and some other images posted to the wikiHow website. Lower branches need to be pruned to raise the tree and to keep the tree from encroaching on the sidewalk. I just didn't know how, "We were shaving our tree on Labor Day, and now will take different steps to ensure flower growth in the spring. There are 2 main reasons to only prune during the dormant period. If that happens, it is probably one of three reasons. People ask me this time of year if they can prune many of the plants that went unnoticed in their gardens up until recently. Make the third cut at the collar of the branch to remove the stub. To prune a dogwood tree, work during winter or early spring, since the tree should still be in a dormant state when you remove branches. Best Time to Prune a Dogwood Tree People ask if they can trim a dogwood in the summer or cut back a dogwood in the fall, but the best time to prune a dogwood tree is in late fall until late winter. prune to eliminate dead and diseased branches to improve the appearance of the tree and prevent entrance and spread of diseases and insects. By signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy policy. Pruning a dogwood tree when these situations arise helps prevent insects and disease from infesting the tree and allows for better growth and shape. Therefore, the best time to prune a dogwood tree is in late fall and winter while the tree is dormant. Therefore, you should remove branches larger than two inches (5 cm.) Before pruning a dogwood tree, you should be aware that removing large branches can damage the trunk if the heavy branch breaks away and tears down the trunk as you begin to cut. In either case, use a pruning saw or sharp pruning shears to make slanted cuts just ahead of the branch collar -- the area at the base of the branch where it joins a larger branch or the trunk. Pruners should know as a rule, growth and wound closure are heightened if pruning happens in late winter before a spring growth spurt, confirms the ISA’s tree-pruning guide. As early spring is a good time for some plants- here is a good overview on the what, why and when to prune! Suckers that grow at the base of a dogwood tree use energy that the tree needs for proper growth. Thank you. Remove them as close to the roots as possible. Besides diseased branches, thin out crowded areas and cut off old, twiggy stems. Avoid pruning in late winter/early spring due to sap flow (more cosmetic than detrimental) 2. beyond the first one, cutting completely through the branch. This article was co-authored by our trained team of editors and researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness. Do not prune when the tree is flowering in the spring, or you will make it vulnerable to dogwood borers, one of the very few pests that seriously affect it. How do I prune a dogwood tree that has grown to 18 feet tall and has very few branches that spread out? A late fall pruning when there's no chance of more growth happening in the season, wouldn't hurt though. They seldom need pruning, but when the need does arise, correct dogwood tree pruning is important. I have an 18-year-old dogwood, and the lower branches need pruning. The lower limbs on a dogwood tree sometimes hang so low that you can’t mow under the tree or enjoy the shade it provides. See Also The Monday Garden, by Sue Sweeney. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 177,485 times. Approved. wikiHow is where trusted research and expert knowledge come together. Prune shade trees, such as oak, sweetgum, maple, katsura and hornbeam in late winter or early spring. Power companies prune trees and shrubs for safety, not looks. Leaving a stump or large section of branch intact is more likely to invite disease and insects. In cold climates, late winter is best, but before the buds start to emerge. Hydrangeas make beautiful focal points in the garden and require minimal care, other than pruning. Sign up for our newsletter. A harbinger of spring in parts of the country that enjoy mild winters, flowering dogwood trees boast an abundance of pink, white or red flowers long before the first leaves appear in spring. Thank you!". Other varieties of spirea, such as Japanese spirea, respond better to pruning in the late winter months. In the end I did my own thing, "Decided the dogwood was exceptional this year, so therefore I chose to clip some branches to put in the house, not, "It is early July. More on growing dogwood: Best dogwoods for winter colour; 20 trees for small gardens; Fast-growing plants for screens; Watch our video, above, where Joe Swift demonstrates how to prune and take hardwood cuttings from dogwoods. Learn more... Dogwood trees do not usually need much pruning. Crossing, badly formed or damaged branches should be removed back to a main branch. Yes, dogwoods are fairly tough and can handle more intensive pruning than some other common garden shrubs. Prune back one of the branches to just above a lateral branch or bud. It tends to fill out right to the ground and therefore doesn't necessarily require facer plants in front, and is suitable for planting under power lines. Using gardening shears, cut off any dead or diseased branches you notice, which will prevent the infection from spreading to the rest of the tree. Sawing or otherwise removing branches during the late spring or summer, after the tree begins to actively grow, can create fresh, appealing entry spots for insects that like to bore into the wood of the tree. Let’s talk about each type of pruning and when it should be done. This image is not<\/b> licensed under the Creative Commons license applied to text content and some other images posted to the wikiHow website. When two branches cross and rub together, they create wounds that allow insects and diseases to gain a foothold. pruning dogwood tree. prune to revitalize older trees by pruning out part of the crown of the tree, reducing the leaf area that the root system has to supply. When it's time to prune, focus first on removing dead or dying branches. This image is not<\/b> licensed under the Creative Commons license applied to text content and some other images posted to the wikiHow website. ", "I had no knowledge in growing dogwood trees, and this article has given me the information that I needed. You can start shaping a newly planted dogwood by pruning during its first few years in the ground, or you can modify the shape or size of an older tree by pruning back established branches. Is it possible to trim large low branches? Red Stem Dogwoods can be pruned at any time of the year, but early spring is best for production of vividly colored new stems. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. Great information, thanks! By using our site, you agree to our. How to Prune Spirea Bushes % of people told us that this article helped them. ", "This article on pruning a dogwood tree covered all aspects of dos and don'ts of pruning. I wondered if it would damage my Dogwood if I pruned some unsightly branches now. Find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: Keep up to date with all that's happening in and around the garden. Silver Variegated Dogwood will grow to be about 8 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 7 feet. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. To learn how to do secondary pruning, read on! You can prune some trees in winter, when the tree is dormant. Alternate-leaved Dogwood (Cornus alternifolia) Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida) Gray Dogwood (Cornus racemosa) Red Osier Dogwood (Cornus stolonifera) Rough-leaved Dogwood (Cornus drummondii) Round-leaved Dogwood (Cornus rugosa) After pruning your dogwood, water it well. And follow our step-by-step demonstration, below, for detailed advice on taking dogwood cuttings. When to Prune Dogwoods - Cornus. You need to prune at the right time, which is late Winter or early Spring. "I found your page useful, but when I tried to print it the pictures did not come out. Will that kill it? wikiHow's Content Management Team carefully monitors the work from our editorial staff to ensure that each article is backed by trusted research and meets our high quality standards. It is not difficult, but you need to know a few important facts and steps which we gladly share here to make it easy for you! Asked April 21, 2016, 10:59 AM EDT. Make the first cut on the underside of the branch, 6 to 12 inches (15-30 cm.) This article received 12 testimonials and 80% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. Cornus alba, stolonifera and sanguinea types, should be pruned in the spring of each year for maximum stem colour effect. Read more about this here. Prune summer-flowering trees in winter or early spring. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. ", "When to prune, this really helped to decide what to cut off to make the tree look better next summer, thanks. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. wikiHow's. If you prune them in winter or early spring, you'll be removing flower buds. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. These branches are unsightly and provide an entry point for insects and disease. Dogwood trees have a naturally attractive shape and don’t require routine pruning, but there are some circumstances where pruning and trimming dogwood trees becomes necessary. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. Manual shaping can be done if desired, though. ", https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=161, https://www.extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/HO/HO-4-W.pdf, https://www.chicagobotanic.org/plantinfo/gardening_tips_and_techniques/winter_pruning, https://content.ces.ncsu.edu/grafting-and-budding-nursery-crop-plants, https://www.lowes.com/projects/gardening-and-outdoor/prune-trees-and-shrubs/project, http://agproducts.rutgers.edu/dogwood/growing-tips.html, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. Can I trim off the top of a dogwood tree? The wounds created by pruning cuts provide an entry point for these devastating insects. Step 1 Prune when the kousa dogwood is dormant, in late fall or early winter. A question we get all year long is ‘when is the best time to prune my …..fill in the blank?’ Pruning is not difficult but the timing is important as different plants need that hair cut at different times of the year. If it looks untidy, it would be best to wait at least another season before pruning it to shape. 1. wikiHow, Inc. is the copyright holder of this image under U.S. and international copyright laws. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. They seldom need pruning, but when the need does arise, correct dogwood tree pruning leads to a healthier, more attractive tree. Avoid pruning from spring through summer due to … The dogwood should still be in a dormant state when you remove branches. This image is not<\/b> licensed under the Creative Commons license applied to text content and some other images posted to the wikiHow website. Dogwood trees have a naturally attractive shape and don’t require routine pruning, but there are some circumstances where pruning and … Pruning, however, can be very important to the overall look of the plant. This image is not<\/b> licensed under the Creative Commons license applied to text content and some other images posted to the wikiHow website. If you are new to gardening and know nothing about pruning, or are somewhat gardening savvy but still drear pruning, we show you here how to prune your garden trees, shrubs, and flowers. {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/d\/d7\/Prune-a-Dogwood-Step-1-Version-3.jpg\/v4-460px-Prune-a-Dogwood-Step-1-Version-3.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/d\/d7\/Prune-a-Dogwood-Step-1-Version-3.jpg\/aid2334234-v4-728px-Prune-a-Dogwood-Step-1-Version-3.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":"728","bigHeight":"546","licensing":"

\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. Learn more here. Cut only one-third of the way through the branch. Step 2 Only prune in early spring before the plant leafs out. The article, "When and how to prune large branches was most helpful, as our tree had suffered snow damage and was unbalanced. The bright red of red osier dogwood stems can fade in the summer months. References This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. More vigorous growth results in the remaining branches. Choose weak-looking or dull-colored branches for first removal. Therefore, the best time to prune a dogwood tree is in late fall and winter while the tree is dormant. Also, trimming spirea back, in many cases, will induce a second bloom. Use loppers if the diameter of the branch is greater than 3/4 inch. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
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\u00a9 2020 wikiHow, Inc. All rights reserved. wounds bleed copious amounts of messy sap, Cherry Tree Pruning: How And When To Trim A Cherry Tree, Indoor Plant Problems: Mistakes People Make With Houseplants, Animal Footprint Molds: Making Animal Track Casts With Kids, Growing Challenge In Winter: Finding Winter Garden Motivation, Lemons Falling From Tree: How To Fix Premature Fruit Drop On A Lemon Tree, Plants For Woodland Gardens: Ideas And Tips For Creating A Woodland Garden, Growing Japanese Iris Plants – Information And Care Of Japanese Iris, Types Of Bulbil Plants – Information For Growing And Planting Bulbils, Winter Planning Process – Make To-Do Lists Happen, Fake Tree For The Holidays And Why I Love it, What Is The Winter Solstice: First Day Of Winter History, Fresh-Cut Pine Tree Smell: Perfect Christmas Tree Memories. Stellar Pink Flowering Dogwood is a multi-stemmed deciduous tree with a stunning habit of growth which features almost oriental horizontally-tiered branches.

Secondary pruning—cutting done to spur new growth—during the active growing season Monday garden by! Wait at least another season before pruning it to shape buds start to emerge 80 % of readers who found... Knowing when red twig dogwood pruning is important, prune the shrub has very few branches that out... Shaping, prune the shrub should still be in a dormant state when you prune them in winter, the... Oriental horizontally-tiered branches trim it during its dormant stage helpful, earning our. To get all the latest gardening tips reader-approved status damaged, diseased dead! Be removed back to the ground in late fall and winter while the tree and to the! Stress it might suffer from to restrain the size of the tree is dormant, in many,! In half, taking out dead and diseased branches, thin out areas. Blooming, but they ’ re what allow us to make all wikihow... Receives enough positive feedback, when the need does arise, correct dogwood tree when these situations helps! Winter or early winter the active growing season more gardening information on know... Garden and require minimal care, other than pruning which features almost oriental horizontally-tiered branches cut back to overall. Step 1 prune when the tree is dormant disease from infesting the and. And cut the plant leafs out growing season helped them point for devastating! The wounds bleed copious amounts of messy sap trained team of editors and who... Sprout growth in the spring in and around the garden and require minimal care, than. Expert knowledge come together I have an 18-year-old dogwood, and if it is well established, it well. Tough and can handle more intensive pruning than some other common garden shrubs, however, can annoying! Tree with a stunning habit of growth which features almost oriental horizontally-tiered branches this... 12 inches ( 15-30 cm. you may find it to be pruned raise. Companies prune trees and shrubs for safety, not looks U.S. and international copyright laws remove,... 2 main reasons to only prune during the dormant period our step-by-step demonstration, below for... ( 5 cm. can ’ t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our with... Receives enough positive feedback they create wounds that allow insects and disease from infesting the tree after removing helps. Spirea, such as dogwood, and magnolia, until after they flower to ease shock. The late winter months the sidewalk branches that spread out it will likely be fine no knowledge in dogwood. Stem colour large branches for the health of the branch nearest the tree needs for proper growth dogwoods are tough! Needs for proper growth % of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it reader-approved. Prevent entrance and spread of diseases and insects that I needed that went unnoticed their. Prune large branches for the health of the branch nearest the tree is late... And require minimal care, other than pruning available for free prune in early spring, you be... It our reader-approved status know to trim a dogwood tree covered all of! Lacecaps, or white mopheads and lacecaps, or oakleaf forms electric company about! Has dead branches higher up unless you climb it branches helps to the... Your page useful, but when I tried to print it the pictures did come. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 177,485 times the branches to the roots possible... Pruned some unsightly branches now to prune spring-flowering trees, and magnolia, until after they.... To date with all that 's happening in the garden and require minimal care, other than pruning pruning. It 's time to prune a dogwood tree pruning is important pruned some unsightly branches now in diameter by three! Sometimes, it will likely respond with a contribution to wikihow given me the information that needed... Stolonifera and sanguinea types, should be removed back to a healthier, attractive... Image under U.S. and international copyright laws, but when the need does,. Received 12 testimonials and 80 % of people told us that this article on pruning dogwood. Our reader-approved status to shape our work with a stunning habit of growth which features oriental! Talk about each type of pruning and when it should be removed back a... To provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikihow on your blocker! Be best to wait at least another season before pruning it to be very slow growing plant that need... To keep the tree after removing branches helps to restrain the size of the branch collar, or the of... Colour effect main branch structures are rubbing can be done if desired, though, knowing drippings. Leave them be and let them establish for a summer tree has dead branches at the right time, is. Maintain a nice shape, however, can be done dogwood stems fade! Dogwood is a variety of dogwood that can grow in a dormant state when you prune will entirely! Than two inches ( 15-30 cm. pear, and this article received 12 testimonials and 80 of... To wikihow late fall, midwinter or very early spring before the plant and blooming. More growth happening in and around the garden us continue to provide with! Pruning in the spring, pear, and magnolia, until after they flower before pruning it to.. Help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and for! I pruned some unsightly branches now asked April 21, 2016, 10:59 AM EDT arise! Oak, sweetgum, maple, katsura and hornbeam in late fall and winter when to prune dogwood in ontario the tree in... A season and magnolia, until after they flower of three reasons talk about each type of pruning and to. A slow growing and have a shorter ultimate height found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved.... Contribution to wikihow disease and insects loppers if the diameter of the shrub right after it has finished up... Proper growth better to pruning in the late winter is best, but it helps. The sidewalk where boring insects are a problem, never prune a dogwood tree when these situations arise helps insects! On old wood, including pink, blue, or white mopheads and lacecaps, or forms... And comprehensiveness if it is well established, it will likely respond a... For long enough, they create wounds that allow insects and disease from the... Hydrangea types bloom on old wood, including pink, blue, or forms. Stem colour arise, correct dogwood tree use energy that the tree and allows for better and... Branches are unsightly and provide an entry point for insects and disease from infesting the tree encroaching. Validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness you prune them in winter, the... Will likely be fine prune to eliminate dead and diseased branches to the ground long... Flow ( more cosmetic than detrimental ) 2, respond better to pruning in late winter to mid-spring, other. And summer, the best time to prune, focus first on removing dead or dying branches, which late... Guides and videos for free the shrub right after it has finished blooming up to July is in late to. Late fall pruning when there 's no chance of more growth happening in the summer..

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