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Trimming a Hebe

I have two of what l believe are Hebe.
When they are finished flowering can l do a very hard trim of these or will it kill them
Thanky you PS: see pic


  • PosyPosy Isle of Wight.Posts: 3,219
    I can't see a picture. I have trimmed hebe hard and sometimes they thrive and sometimes they look a mess and never recover. It is worth taking a few cuttings before you chop, just in case. Most root very easily.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,325
    I'd agree with @Posy. It's best to trim lightly after flowering, rather than hard pruning. Severe pruning can depend on the variety, and the conditions at the time.
    They often don't recover here, but some can die in winter anyway due to excessive wet and cold. 
    Pic isn't showing - if you can make sure it's smaller in size that helps. Around 1MB is ideal for loading quickly  :)  
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Sorry about the pic. My two shrubs now stand at about 1.5 meters and are basically taking over but l don’t really want to rip them out.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,325
    The problem with cutting back hard is that they may not come back.
    The alternative, if you don't want to move one, or both, is to remove individual stems right back to the main trunk, and therefore reduce the overall size. The drawback of that is that it's hard to maintain the natural shape of the plant. 

    Hebes range enormously in size, and the larger leaved ones tend to be less tough than the smaller, more box leaved ones too. I certainly wouldn't cut back at this time of year, assuming it's winter where yo are. Doing it in stages in spring/summer would be better, but you may need to reduce the size over a couple of years instead.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Hi again,
    Its mid summer here (Victoria, Australia).
    They are flowering at the moment with lots of bees so l won’t be doing anything for a couple of months
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,325
    I didn't think you were in the UK if that was a recent photo!
    You'd have to make a judgement on it, depending on how you feel. You could cut back a good bit now, and sacrifice the flowers and that would give the shrub some time to recover, and then you'd be able to cut back again next spring/early summer. That would enable you to reduce the overall size more quickly. 
    It's always difficult to sacrifice those flowers, and the visiting insects though.  :)
    Alternatively, remove one completely and either relocate it, which can also be tricky, or find it a new home with someone else. Failing that, dispose of it.
    It depends on how they're impacting on your garden though, and what room you have. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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