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Eleganus pruning

joep229joep229 Posts: 4
edited December 2018 in Problem solving
I have a bunch of these shrubs which grew too large. Someone told me that they are eleaganus. I have pretty drastically pruned them but looking at them now I think I want to prime them further so that I can have them grow even smaller. Can I prune them down further. Are they eleaganus? Thanks


  • PosyPosy Posts: 3,601
    It's difficult to tell whether they are eleagnus or not but I would suggest digging them out and planting ground cover rather than trying to force a naturally vigorous and spreading shrub into some sort of dwarfism. Eleagnus make excellent individual shrubs or can be used for informal hedges, but close cutting like that just ruins them.
  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 27,299
    I agree with Posy, I've seen them hacked like that in municipal plantings, forever ugly.
    I think it is Elaeagnus ebingeii

    In the sticks near Peterborough
  • Papi JoPapi Jo Posts: 3,993
    edited December 2018
    Agree with @Posy. As far as I can see they're not being used as hedging,  so you'd better dig them out. There are plenty of nicer things to replace them alongside that wall .
    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700
    You can prune them further back and they should still rejuvenate. If you are keeping it to around a meter in height you will need to prune the shrub every year. If that is too much for you, then this is not the shrub for you or for that space.

  • joep229joep229 Posts: 4
    edited January 2019
    Thank you all for your input. I had most of them as a hedge before and will try keeping those as a shorter more compact hedge and the rest as smaller shrubs for a while and see how that goes. It has been a job keeping them looking, nice trimming them every few weeks though the warm months. I have a lot of them and in retrospect I wish I did choose something else. I'm thinking that in order to be able to even keep them at this height, I would have to take them down more, to make room for leaves. Happy New Year.
  • PosyPosy Posts: 3,601
    I think you chose the wrong shrubs, Joe. I love eleagnus but they are never neat, they are loose and irregular. Never mind, we all live and learn!
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,642
    They do have a lovely perfume from tiny creamy flowers in the autumn but if you are pruning them hard all the time you must be cutting off the flowering stems.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • I was curious about flowers and berries. I have never seen a hint of either, even when I was we'll overdue on my pruning. Do you think it will be a bear to dig these out. They have been in the ground 10 years.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,642
    Shouldn't think it will be too difficult if you've kept them short all the time. Only way to find out is to dig out the one on the end.  Easiest way is to dig a trench at least 1', preferably 2' all around the main stem, feel around by hand and cut off all the roots you come across and then you should be able to lever the middle tap root up and out with the bush attached.  Good luck
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • Thanks :)
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