Do you want to get your plants looking their best? Consider implementing garden pruning practices! These are things that you’ll want to do to your plant that will really help them keep their form, keep them healthy and get them going in the right direction. Like with all plants, it’s a good idea to start when they’re younger and develop a good structure as they grow. Doing this extra bit of landscaping maintenance will really add a visual pop to your Illinois garden! 

A Quick Guide to Garden Pruning What is Garden Pruning?

Garden pruning is the measured removal of branches, stems, and/or flowers from plants. It isn’t done just for style, though. Pruning helps to manage the growth and structure of plants, removes dead or diseased stems and branches, and encourages the development of flowers, fruit, and new foliage. The art of pruning is a skill you can develop over time. Don’t be afraid to experiment and learn as you go! By knowing your plant, its purpose, and especially when it blooms, you will be able to prune perfectly.

What Should be Pruned?

  • Broken branches
  • Branches that look like they’re dying
  • Branches that are crossing and rubbing each other
  • Branches that are growing upward inside the plant

After this initial pruning, then we can step back and look at the structure of the plant to see how we want to shape it and see what would aesthetically please us.

A Quick Guide to Garden PruningConsider the Overall Shape

With garden pruning, the basic rule of thumb is that less is more. Think carefully about how you want to shape each plant BEFORE you make the cut. It can be helpful to research the best time and technique to prune each of your plants correctly. Remember, it’s easy enough to make another cut, but not so simple to reattach a branch!

When to Prune

Dead, dying, or broken branches can be removed as soon as you notice them, but when it comes to pruning for shape or size, take into consideration the time of year. Early spring is the best time to prune summer-flowering shrubs, evergreen hedges, fruit-bearing trees, pines, and spruce. Wait to prune spring-flowering shrubs until after they are done flowering, though.


End Note:

There you have it! The best garden pruning tips for a beautiful Illinois garden! Pruning is an essential gardening skill that will improve the look of your plants and also help them continue to grow and flourish in the coming years. Now you should have the knowledge to keep plants and shrubs in your garden looking great. For more information or help with all things garden, be sure to check out our website at

Contact American Gardens Today!