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Forsythia renovation

Hi, does anyone have experience of cutting an old v.overgrown forsythia down to ground level in Oct/autumn?

Here’s the problem-it’s very old and in the way of my work on new flower beds that need weeding and planting up and I want to cut it right down to ground/few inches now rather than winter to carry on my work. Aware I’ll lose next Spring’s flowers but it’s overdue a drastic cut so I’ll skip one season’s flowers. 

I believe this hard cut is best done in winter when dormant - is this just for convenience (ie easier as leaves are off) or will cutting right down now harm the plant? 

Thanks 
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Posts

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,904
    edited October 2018
    We had a large tree removed and the stump ground out a few autumns ago ... this necessitated a forsythia being cut down to the ground.  It grew again the following spring and flowered two years after that ... so we lost two years' flowers.

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





  • Wow - 2 years. Thanks Dove 
  • ZeroZero1ZeroZero1 Posts: 577
    I have just hacked mine down to a 2ft stump, after it got so tall I could not reach its top with my ladder! I am super confident I have not seen the last of it. I expect it will produce shoots (pollards) that will flower either late summer or next spring. 
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 12,468
    If you need to cut it back and aren't too worried about next year's flowers, l would go for it. I have cut forsythia back at this time of year, and it has survived..
  • Thanks zerozero and AnniD!!

    Good to hear.
    I think I’ll go for it! 
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,016
    If it doesn't like it you can just dig out the offending stump and plant something that's interesting for more than 2 weeks a year - assuming you like the garish yellow flowers in the first place.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Hi Obelixx, it was here when we moved in so I kind of feel the need to keep it  :)
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,016
    Why?  Have you kept all the old wallpaper and wall colours in the house?  Left every room as it was?
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • I’ve ripped out most of everything- inside and out. It’s nice to keep the odd thing here and there, especially if established - and the birds like it  :)
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 12,468
    If you like it (as opposed to feeling you should like it !), then fair enough. When it's cut right back,  you might change your mind - that's what gardening is like.  :)
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