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Physocarpus out growing space

Novice23Novice23 East SussexPosts: 179

I have a Physocarpus Diablo which is outgrowing the space it is in.  It is in a border and I would like to move it, but wonder whether trying to dig it up will just kill it.  Any suggestions on moving it or else how could I take some cuttings, perhaps soft wood cuttings.  I usually cut it back after flowering, but it does not seem to like this, as it just rampages through the rest of the summer.   If it is not 'dealt' with, I am sure it will be consigned to the composter and that would be a shame, but it is smothering everything else around it.   Help please.



  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,368

    Hi Novice. this is a naturally large quick shrub. Its response to cutting back is to grow even faster. Maybe it's just too big for the space available and should be replaced by something smaller

  • Novice23Novice23 East SussexPosts: 179

    Thanks for the responses.  Nutcutlet - Yup it is definitely too bit for the space it is in, but I would like to move it and let what is there have room to grow, rather than losing it altogether.  When it is in flower it is lovely.  Would it be happy in partial shade?  

    Thanks Verdun for the suggestion about hardwood cuttings, are they the same as for roses where you put them in a trench and leave them?    I would like to take cuttings then if I move it and it dies I might have something left.  When would be best time to do hardwood cuttings and should I do them in pots? You can tell I am very green about cuttings!  Thanks for all the help.






  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,368

    Hardwood cuttings at once, if not sooner.

    If you click on 'how to' at the top of this page there's an article on hardwood cuttings. I often put them in pots because I never have a suitable bit of ground ready but I should think in the ground would be better.

    My physocarpus is in some shade, maybe too much of it. It gets some die back on new shoots sometimes though overall it does OK

  • Novice23Novice23 East SussexPosts: 179

    Thank you both for the advice and link to the "How To...", it looks straightforward and as it is not raining (at the moment) I will try that later today.  Pots sound a good idea too, as I can keep it sheltered more easily.   Then I might try moving it. Can I do it in spring or should I wait until next autumn, when I might have some cuttings?



  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,368

    I'd take the cuttings now and move it now. Winter is fine for moving deciduous shrubs.Unless it's frozen ground or waterlogged.

    Hmmmm. Waterlogged, Could be a problem there.

  • Novice23Novice23 East SussexPosts: 179

    Hi just finished taking the hardwood cuttings and have ab out a dozen in pots.  Ground is definitely too waterlogged to dig at the moment, would probably need a snorkel if I tried.  I will move it in early spring, as soon as the ground is hard enough to work on, and will try your suggestion Edd, of dividing the roots.  I might end up with a couple of new plants and at least I can say I tried!!!


    Many thanks for all the help.  

  • Novice23Novice23 East SussexPosts: 179

    That sounds like a good plan Verdun.  Can probably manage that now, as I have a couple of branches that are bent down towards the soil anyway.  

    Many thanks


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