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rejuvenating shrubs

catnipcatnip Posts: 73

I have two photinia fraseri red robin, both very leggy. Has anyone chopped these severely to give them a kick start?

Also, have a pieris that has stopped growing (in between the photinia but has some space). Any suggestions?

Thanks, folks!


  • Alina WAlina W Posts: 1,445

    The pieris can get to about ten foot quite happily, and then doesn't grow much more. If yours is much smaller, it's too congested. To reduce its height remove a third of the branches every year for three years.

    I gave my photinia a good chop back in May as it was getting too big for the spot it was in. It looks really healthy and a bit bushier, so give it a go.
  • Pieris is more slow-growing anyway, and needs acid soil, whereas most Photinias are more tolerant of either somewhat alkaline or acid soil. If your pieris is healthy, your soil must be OK for it, but it might be a thought. The eventual spread of a pieris can be 2 metres or more so when it gets larger it will need space. Photinia can stand hard pruning but will not flower as well the following year.

  • I've seen Photinia growing between the central reserve safety barriers on autoroutes in France. They are cut mechanically to a height of about 1.5m. Photinias are very forgiving.

    Mine flowered for the first time last year. I really did need to cut it back as it was getting so tall it was blocking my view from the window. I'm afraid it was an impulse buy a few years ago and was planted with a view to moving it to a better position when I cleared a new border. Unfortunatly it took me so long as I had an op on my foot that it never did get moved. Must really stop these impulse buys !!
  • Where would we be without bargains and impulse buys? My garden is composed of them because I can't walk around a garden centre or open garden without buying something. I've made quite a few mistakes but learnt a lot, too, and had quite a lot of fun. Shrubs are a bigger problem than herbaceous perennials, and I have no idea how I'll accommodate some of mine when they reach their eventual size. That's why I learnt something about pruning them!  

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