Forum home Plants

Cutting back plants

stuarta99stuarta99 Posts: 235
Hi guys,

Some advice again if possible please. Looking at cutting back my rose, lavender and Hebe for the winter. My neighbour has cut his back really tight but I have one that's all woody at the bottom and unsure how far down I could go without killing it. 

Also with the Hebe and lavender I'd like to remove some of the circumference but again unsure how to keep it safe.

Many thanks

Posts

  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 23,783

    You can't cut back into old wood with lavender. If I get around to it I trim the lavender lightly after flowering then I leave the growth for winter protection and give it a shorter cut in spring, but only cutting previous year's growth, not old wood.

    Taller roses can be shortened to help stop wind rock during winter, then pruned properly in February/March.

    I'm not sure about Hebes, I never used to prune them, but I stopped growing them as they often died in the winter if it was a hard one.

    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • Remove the flowerheads and stems of your lavender now, but take care not to prune into the old wood, lavender doesn't regenerate and it may be beneficial to take either take cuttings or replace the plant if it is too large and 'gnarly' for it's allotted space.

    The best time to prune Hebe is straight after to flowering, although if your plant needs to be renovated severely this should be done in late Winter/ early Spring just before new growth appears. Take out any old and crossing branches completely.

    Roses can be pruned back by about half this time of year, ( to minimise wind damage)taking out any dead, diseased or crossing branches to ground level. A further pruning should be carried out late Winter/ early Spring, by approximately half again, this gives chance to remove any frost damage to to make sure the shrub is pruned to a fairly, open bowl shape and to allow air to penetrate and reduce risk of disease. Always prune to an outward facing bud with a slanting cut away from the bud to avoid water damage.
    To reduce disease risk further, remove all fallen leaves from around the rose as black spot is spread via spores which will re-infect new growth.
    A gardener's work is never at an end  - (John Evelyn 1620-1706)
  • stuarta99stuarta99 Posts: 235
    Ok thanks so generally then with the lavender, I'll just cut off the flowers and stems back to the main bush like I normally do. Diameter wise not much I can do but just be careful not to go down to wood level.

    Hebe, same again, was hoping to shrink it a bit by taking some off around the edge but doesn't sound like it's that easy.

    On the roses, I'll cut then back again like I normally do and my neighbour takes his right to the base but I'm assuming on the tall one I have, I shouldn't do this because the base is all woody
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,007
    It's best to leave major pruning till after winter's worst frosts have passed so that the old wood takes the hit and protects the stems below and further in.   Come spring you then remove it all in the spring prune.

    Hebes are particularly prone to dying off in winter so wait.  Lavender, as stated, doesn't grow back from old wood so tidy the flower stems now but leave the rest till after winter.  Very long stems on roses can be cut back by a third to a half now to reduce wind rock damage to the roots.  Prune back to healthy buds in spring after first removing dead or broken stems.  Feed them all after the spring prune.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,762
    If you want to reduce the width of the Hebe, it's better to take single branches out, right back to the main stem, rather than trimming the whole thing. You can do that anytime, as it doesn't affect the part you want to retain. Otherwise, just leave it now, as it'll help protect it in poor weather, and prevent new growth being damaged.
    The variegated ones aren't as robust anyway, so best not tampered with at the moment.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....



    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 12,454
    General question re the hebe (and maybe a thought for @stuarta99), @fairygirl would the hebe take kindly to being moved in the Spring ?
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,007
    The best time to move shrubs is autumn while they are least active above ground - even the evergreen ones slow down - and the roots can get on with recovering and growing into their new home without too many demands being made from above from foliage transpiration or flower production.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,762
    Sorry - didn't see your query Anni.  :)
    You could try moving it, but if it's well established, I think it could be tricky. They often don't recover very well from hacking back,which you'd need to do.
    As Obelixx says - this is the best time of year for moving. Again, you'd need to cut it back a fair bit, so it would depend on weather. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....



    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 12,454
    Thanks @Fairygirl :)
Sign In or Register to comment.