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  • Hometalker
  • Haymarket, VA
Asked on May 8, 2017

When is a good time to prune forsythia? How far back can you cut?

SuzanneEllisCaseyem11
+2

Answered

5 answers
  • Shirley
    on May 8, 2017

    I trim mine after it blooms. I have cut mine as low as 18 inches in the fall.
  • Caseyem11
    on May 8, 2017

    It is best to prune after flowering. Forsythia is a sturdy plant that can take vigorous prunung so take it down as far as you want to. In order to maintain a healthy plant, remove about a third of the old canes at the ground level. This will keep the center of the plant looking good.
  • Ellis
    on May 9, 2017

    If you don't want to cut it all down at once, I think Caseyem11's idea is the way to go. I did this a while ago on a very over-grown, messy row of forsythia. I didn't want to take it all down to 18" because it provides privacy from a neighbor. So I went to work, cutting out all the oldest, least-productive canes. The following spring, the forsythia bloomed beautifully. Now, each spring I cut out some dead canes, and it keeps the shrubs looking neat when they're not blooming. This also works on a Kerria plant that gets rangy.
  • Suzanne
    on May 9, 2017

    It needs to be done early in the spring before it blooms or wait until after its done blooming.
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