When Should You Prune?

My Weekly - - Gardening -

You can prune ap­ple and pear trees be­tween Novem­ber and early March, and I like to do this be­fore Christ­mas. Keep­ing fruit trees in good shape keeps them pro­duc­tive. You prune in sum­mer to pro­duce fruit buds for the fol­low­ing year, prune in win­ter to es­tab­lish a frame­work. The neatly pruned pear will look good against the house wall. ◆ Although we live in a val­ley, win­ter gales can still be dam­ag­ing, so I re­duce all the bud­dleias to stop them get­ting wind rock. I started with one lovely deep pur­ple bud­dleia Black Knight and, by tak­ing cut­tings, now have six for their sum­mer scent and but­ter­fly magic. In March I’ll prune them fur­ther to about three feet so the flow­ers won’t be way above my head. Re­duce the

height of bush roses too and make sure that climbers are se­curely tied. ◆ Any loose strands of clema­tis can be wo­ven into a Christ­mas wreath. I fix moss onto a wire frame, tie on a dark green back­ground of ivy and pine and add scented rose­mary, holly berries and rose­hips – a lovely way to greet vis­i­tors to the front door.

Bud­dleia Black Knight

Christ­mas wreath

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