Cut out dead wood
Pruning this material not only improves the look of the plant, but also makes space for new shoots to grow from the base, and provides fewer places for pests and diseases to overwinter. What to cut Remove old and weak branches at the centre of shrubs and fruit bushes to prevent overcrowding and, in some cases, dead stems. Lower branches may also die on trees where they are shaded by the crown. Look for buds that failed to grow at the ends of previously pruned stems. Where to cut Remove all dead wood by cutting back flush to a main branch or healthy, strong bud. Watch for short, dead stubs or ‘snags’. When to cut Before the majority of leaves fall from deciduous specimens, so you can easily tell which parts of the plant are alive. Take care not to cut live material that looks dead but has simply lost its leaves.
Cut flush to a live branch so wounds heal quickly