I love to prune! So, if you scroll all the way to the end of this post, you’ll find a video of me in action. And I’m not talking about getting out the electric clippers and buzzing and hacking the heck out of a hedge – no. To me, pruning a plant is an art form. I waited a year and a half to find a Loropetalum Standard with burgandy foliage to compliment the trim on my house. So when I dropped in on one of our local nurseries that happened to be getting an order in from Monrovia that week it was bingo … perhaps my plant is on the horizon! I did not want “Razzleberry” and was delighted to find out they had Loropetalum”Sizzling Pink” in a tree form in stock and ready to ship.
Here’s the plant as I bought it on September 27, 2010
Here’s how the plant looks today on February 10, 2012
I took these pictures so you can see how densely this plant grows if not thinned out
This is the foliage color I wanted
Pruning to me is second nature – I look at a plant and see what I want to do. Lucy, who was shooting the video, had a few questions so I thought I’d answer them here for you too.
*Where do you start on a plant like this? I start by selectively thinning out smaller branches which then leads me to prune out larger branches. I’m basically trying to “de-blob” and open up the plant as a first step.
*Why such a small cut? I’m at the stage now where just the ends get tipped to encourage more upward growth – I want the plant to get taller not wider. Besides, it’s better to start with small cuts so you don’t have “pruner’s remorse”!
*Do you always prune the branches at an angle? Generally (but not always), yes. I prune the ends of this plant at an angle so it points the new growth in the direction I want it to go.
Watch the video below to see my dark-leafed plant on its way to graceful and beautiful form – just like an lacy umbrella!
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Nell, the founder of Joy Us garden, was born into a gardening family and grew up in Connecticut’s countryside. After living in Boston, New York, San Francisco, & Santa Barbara, she now calls the Arizona desert home. She studied horticulture & garden design, working in the field all her life. Nell is a gardener, designer, blogger, Youtube creator, & author. She’s been gardening for a very long time & wants to share what she’s learned with you.