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Overgrown wisteria management

I've just moved into a new house with an overgrown wisteria tree that has grown in to an adjacent blackthorn tree and also climbs up the back of the house. As you can see in the pic there is a lot of wispy growth on the top of the tree and also at the base. There are lots of bud so hopefully will flower well. My Q's are: Should I cut this wispy growth back hard at the end of summer? Should I worry about it growing in to the blackthorn. And can I cut the growth on the house back with a hedge trimmer or do I need to use pruning shears so each branch is cut to the correct length? Sorry for the long message!


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,442
    Prune back hard  in September to get rid of surplus and get the shape you want.

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,743
    there's the easy, quick way of the hedgetrimmer, or you can spend a bit / lot more time and do it properly with secateurs. 
    You only have to do it once, so , if it were mine, I'd spend the time doing it right.
    You could take the wispy bits off now before the leaves come on which is easier than doing it in summer. You may lose some of this season's flowers, but worth it in the log run.
  • Hi, I've just got a plant identification app and discovered that what I thought was a wisteria tree, is in fact a tree covered with wisteria. I think the tree is Sambucus nigra (although not 100% sure - pic of leaf included). The tree is not producing a huge amount of leaf, which I think is because it has so much wisteria over it. What is the best approach to managing this? I'd like the tree to flourish but also like the idea of keeping some of the wisteria in the tree if possible. Any suggestions, do I need to remove all the wisteria?

  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,999
    I would be inclined to cut the wisteria all back to 3-4 ft tall (although you may wish to wait for the flowers to be over - wisteria usually blooms late April/early May) clearing it all off the tree (which itself needs pruning if it is a sambucas). If the wisteria survives, it should put out new shoots next year which you could try to train where you want it to go. 
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
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