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BLOG: Cutting Back8 November 2010
As soon as the last leaf touches the ground it’s time to whip out into the garden and start winter pruning. Be careful not to prune stone fruit however as the sap is being drawn back into the plant and airborne spores of disease such as silver leaf can be drawn into the plants vascular system at the same and cause problems next spring. Potentially tender plants such as Clematis, Buddleia and Wisteria are best cut back at the end of winter as this bypasses the risk of frost getting into the tissue and causing die-back. At this time of year your can also prune repeat flowering roses by one third and then tidy up for flowering in early spring.
Whilst the secatuers are out don’t be to hasty in cutting back, many perennials will have viable seed ripening within and this is a good food source for small birds over winter. Plants such as fennel & sea holly have interesting skeletal shapes which also offer over-wintering habitats for beneficial insects.
Paul Hervey-Brookes Plantsman & Garden Designer.