To prune in August or not: September’s reward

Dwarf roses which didn’t do well this spring. I pruned these right back to a few leaves in August and watered well, daily.
New growth on these healthy dwarf roses in my own garden in September.

There are two schools of thought about pruning, or so it seems. If you watch the various YouTube videos. You’ll find that some garden experts will tell you to wait, depending on the plant. Without harsh electronic equipment you can prune carefully and discriminate from plant to plant, depending on the flowering pattern.

However, it is possible to prune and leave the new growth intact. Just use secateurs and prune to the next shoot, slowly. Not only will you be rewarded in a month or two, but you’ll keep the garden looking fresh and serene. I’ve done this with the Mexican Orange below; and the clematis.

Mexican Orange. September flowers. Smell heavenly in the evening. I pruned this carefully in August, leaving the buds, which were visible about 3″ in.

You can trim the dead flowers off the Buddleia and thin to a third, to maintain the health. The best time is spring, although it is possible to do this with care in September.

I trimmed the dead flowers and retained the new leaves in September. I also cut out dead wood at the base.
Remove dead wood, mottled and yellowing leaves, and criss crossing branches. Take out a third. This will let in more light and enable the new buds to flourish.
I pruned this rose right back in August and now it is in full bloom again in September.

All photography is by Hermione Laake, and is subject to copyright.

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