How can a burning bush be coaxed to "burn" or turn red?

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I have burning bushes lining my back of the house that have been there for many, many, many years, but have only turned red every now and then and only on the tips. I also had a huge burning bush on the front corner of my house that had been there for about the same length of time but would not turn red ever, not even a smidgen, until I finally decided to have it chopped down out of sheer frustration and disappointment. I live in a western suburb of Chicago. Help!

  5 answers
  • Linda Sikut Linda Sikut on Jun 25, 2018
    Hi Verisimo,
    Is your burning bush next to your house? We had one that was close to our house in the front and it rarely turned that bright red. I think it was because the brick on the house kept it too warm. Burning bushes are like other trees that turn color. They need sun on all parts of the bush and turn red when the weather turns cold. Their leaves tend to fall off early so if the bush stays warm, due to being close to the house, it doesn't have time to turn red. I hope that helps. Wishing you the best.

  • Lsherbach Lsherbach on Jun 25, 2018
    You might be pruning at the wrong time you should do so in very early spring before leaves appear because the "burning" produces only on early flush of new growth in spring, so you should apply fertilizer very early to maximize the effect.

    I know how frustrating this is. I had a lilac bush for 10 years and it NEVER produced one lilac blossom. The spring after I sold my house, the new owner sent me a picture of the lilac in full bloom. I was happy for them; but furious for me!


  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jun 25, 2018
    burning bushes only turn red in the fall

    • Verisimo Soriano Verisimo Soriano on Jun 26, 2018
      Of course burning bushes only turn red in the fall, I know that, but my burning bushes hardly turn red in the fall, and I don't know why, and I want to know how to fix that. Thank you for trying

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jun 30, 2018
    Hello Verisimo, Have you read the link to Gardening knowhow .com. given to you by B. Enne from Canada, seemed to be just what you were looking for?