How to prune spirea

Written by kathleen bunn
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Spiraea are beautiful flowering shrubs. They are relatively easy to grow and care for, and with proper routine care, these plants can have a long and thriving life. Regular pruning should be done once a year to maintain their shape and to encourage new growth and development of the shrub. With a few minutes and some basic gardening tools, you can properly prune your spiraea and have it ready for another year of blooming.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Hand pruners
  • Loping shears

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  1. 1

    Cut spring-blooming spiraea right after they flower each year. These types of spiraea bloom on old wood and branches, so they are pruned mostly to keep their shape and to not let them grow too woody and unproductive.

  2. 2

    Use lopping shears for larger branches or hand pruners for smaller ones, and just cut the old blooms off of the top of your spring-blooming spiraea.

  3. 3

    Remove any stray branches, and shape your spring-blooming spiraea with your lopping shears to maintain the good health of the old wood. Do not cut too much off of your spring-blooming spiraea each year, or it will not be able to bloom sufficiently the next year.

  4. 4

    Prune summer-blooming spiraea in early spring before they bloom. Summer-blooming spiraea bloom on new growth, and cutting them in early spring encourages more new growth to form, increasing the amount of blooms on your plant.

  5. 5

    Take off up to half of the summer-blooming spiraea's old growth. You can safely cut newer spiraeas hybrids back to within 4 to 6 inches of the ground, and have them recover enough by the summer to be covered in beautiful new blooms.

  6. 6

    Cut off all of the oldest branches of your summer-blooming spiraea first. Since these spiraea bloom on new growth, the older branches will not produce any blooms, and serve no purpose. If you don't want to cut your summer-blooming spiraea back too much, simply cut off the oldest branches and then shape your spiraea by cutting off at least 3 to 5 inches from its top.

  7. 7

    Give your spiraea proper care and fertilisation after pruning to ensure a productive blooming season. Visit the resource listed below for information on when different types of spiraea should be pruned.

Tips and warnings

  • Use caution when working with loping shears or hand pruners.

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