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Is it possible to prune my very overgrown (almost a mini tree) pittosporum into a hedge?

My pittosporums haven’t been trimmed/pruned in years (would be more than 5 years, if not since they were planted). They are very tall and have an almost tree like appearance - the top half is full of green leaves but the bottom half is practically a thin tree trunk with the very occasional baby branch coming from it. My mum planted them with the hopes of pruning them into a hedge/screen but sadly got sick many years ago and the whole garden is overgrown - I was wondering if it’s possible to trim them to somehow encourage growth at the bottom of the plant as well as the top (so it becomes bushier as well as more of a screen) or would that kill the plant and stunt the growth?


  • didywdidyw Posts: 2,727
    I had two pittosporums in pots - one mine and one my mum's.  When mum died I brought hers home and planted both in the garden and both have grown into trees.  I don't think pruning yours back after all this time will help them bush out from the bottom - one of mine has a few wisps at the base which I intend using in a floral arrangement at some point.  One of them was pruned at the top into a rounded shape (by a professional as a favour), the other just left. I have sawn back a couple of the branches of that one to let in more light below without no detrimental affect.  They are both multi-stemmed which I like.  It's nice to have the height in the garden, and the evergreen of the leaves, without it being too overpowering.
  • They make beautiful and manageable small trees... perhaps a better solution would be to plant a different species at the base to grow into a hedge below them? I don't think they will take kindly to such extreme pruning.
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