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Sambucus black lace

Looking for advice on pruning sambucus black lace. As you will see from two photos one is established and tall but losing its leaves while  the other more compact and looking healthier. Should I prune  the taller and make it more compact and if so when ? Do they need regular feeding 




  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,577

    The older one ,I'd cut back to roughly the level of the top of the little wall, maybe further down with some of the smaller stems. 

    The smaller one, I'd cut the whole thing down to about 12" / 30cm .

    Do both in early Spring.

  • Thanks for response much appreciated . Peter

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,577


  • Just bought one of the Sambucus black lace for a pot. If I continue to keep it pruned at its current height, will it thrive and bush out. It is currently about 18" high.
  • Peter553Peter553 Posts: 98
    I have only pruned this shrub once as it does not belong to me and that was this year. As a result I was reluctant to prune too hard. I would suggest the same - give it time to establish and then when you think it needs pruned do so.
  • StevedaylillyStevedaylilly Posts: 1,087
    Hi Pete 
    As for feeding, as for feeding I normally hoe in a few handfuls of Growmore around the base and then give them a good 2" multch of garden compost in early summer. They are really a low maintenance shrub once they are establish and require a prune after flowering. If its getting big or more folliage on top then prune back to about 2 ft 
  • Lily PillyLily Pilly Posts: 3,845
    I prune mine hard in early spring. I treat them a bit like a buddleia. They are only 10 years old tho and used to being treated harshly

    Weeds are flowers, too, once you get to know them.”
    A A Milne
  • Mary370Mary370 Posts: 2,003
    edited June 2018
    @Lily Pilly I used to prune mine hard in Spring, but I got no flowers
  • Green MagpieGreen Magpie Posts: 806
    If you prune out some of the oldest stems each Spring, right back near the base, you'll still get flowers. For what it's worth, it's an easy plant to propagate from cuttings.
  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 22,659
    If you want leave then prune hard in early spring, if you want flowers then prune after flowering. I always did the former but I didn't prune it this spring and I had masses of flowers. This question was asked in September last year and I would have given the same answer as Hosta.
    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
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