Fine Gardeners Blog

Pruning Hydrangea Arborescens

Paul Marini - Marini Fine Gardeners - Thursday, August 09, 2018
Fine Gardeners - Pruning Hydrangea Arborescens
Fine Gardeners - Pruning Hydrangea Arborescens

Fine Gardeners - Pruning Hydrangea Arborescens
Fine Gardeners - Pruning Hydrangea Arborescens

Photo 1 is hydrangea arborescens before pruning which has become floppy and spread beyond its intended range. Many of the outer canes are bending and need to be removed. Photo 2 shows the same hydrangea after drastic reduction in height as well as diameter of the clump and thinning for appropriate spacing of canes. Many new basal shoots will emerge this season.

Photo 3 is a closeup shot from the other side before pruning. Notice the density of growth and the bent canes. Photo 4 is the same plant after pruning. The remaining canes are strong and straight. It should be noted that hydrangea arborescens will develop flower buds on this season's growth, so they can be pruned back as low as 6" and they will flower beautifully the same season. Some people cut them all the way to the ground, but I believe it's best to keep them at least 6" high for stronger cane development. Hydrangea macrophylla, comprised mainly of lacecap and mophead forms, cannot be pruned in this manner because they develop their flower buds on last year's growth.

For more information on pruning hydrangea arborescens, contact Paul Marini at Fine Gardeners.

Pruning Hydrangeas

Paul Marini - Marini Fine Gardeners - Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Closeup at the base of a hydrangea serrata that had never been pruned in photo 1. Photo 2 shows the same view after removing nearly 70% of the canes, many of which were dead. This is the appropriate density for hydrangeas. Pruning was done mid-summer because it was the only visit of the season, however, the optimal time to do this type of pruning on most hydrangeas is early spring before the leaves form. We start by removing dead canes and then remove some of the older less productive canes and leaving the younger more productive canes.

Pruning Wisteria

Paul Marini - Marini Fine Gardeners - Thursday, May 03, 2018

This Wisteria is out of control and is about to devour the side of the client's house. Both the Chinese and Japanese form can grow 10 to 20 feet per year, so they often need to be pruned at least two or three times per season and even more often in some cases. It was necessary to cut the vine and pull it from the shutters, down spouts and windows in this case. We reduced the Wisteria to the confines of the supporting trellis.

For more information on pruning wisteria, contact Paul Marini at Fine Gardeners.

Pruning Roses

Paul Marini - Marini Fine Gardeners - Friday, April 13, 2018
Fine Gardeners - Pruning Roses, Newton, Brookline, Needham, MA
Fine Gardeners - Pruning Roses, Newton, Brookline, Needham, MA
Fine
Fine Gardeners - Pruning Roses, Newton, Brookline, Needham, MA

Fine Gardeners - Pruning Roses, Newton, Brookline, Needham, MA
Fine Gardeners - Pruning Roses, Newton, Brookline, Needham, MA


Photo 1 shows a rose bush that has never been pruned properly, probably 10 years old. Photo 2 is a closeup of the same rose bush that has been lopped back to about 15" to allow for easier access in order to do drastic thinning. Note the density and congestion of stems throughout the bush. "Aah, I can breath!" Photo 3 shows the same bush after drastic thinning. The most desirable stems are preserved to allow for strong, healthy growth that will support clean foliage and flowering. Now there is appropriate spacing between stems to allow for good light penetration and air circulation. To the uninitiated, this looks like outright butchery. My client was concerned that I killed her roses, but as the next photo shows, her worries were soon relieved.

Photo 4 shows the same rose bush taken at the end of July, whereas, the first 3 photos were taken in early May. As you can see from photo 4, roses are extremely resilient and respond well to hard pruning and thinning. From the same property photo 5, taken early April, shows two roses side by side after reduction and thinning. Photo 6 shows the same roses taken in early September, happy and healthy with loads of flower buds to continue flowering well into the fall.

For more information on pruning roses, contact Paul Marini at Fine Gardeners.

Cohasset Garden Renovation Before and After

Paul Marini - Marini Fine Gardeners - Friday, March 30, 2018

This is an ocean front property with very harsh winter winds. Some of the plants were in poor condition and overcrowded so we removed the majority of them and pruned the remaining shrubs as needed. The client wanted more of a cottage-style garden with color and interest each season. The first two photos show the front yard and beds before doing any work. The third photo shows a similar view of the completed job for comparison. The following photos will show more details.

For more information about cottage-style garden, contact Paul Marini at Fine Gardeners.

 

Recreating a Poolside Garden

Paul Marini - Marini Fine Gardeners - Tuesday, March 27, 2018


This is a tiny garden bed next to a swimming pool that had an existing planting of Gold Thread Cypress as seen in Photo 1. The shrubs were no longer very attractive so it was time for a change. The client really liked ornamental grasses so that is primarily what he wanted. Photo 2 shows the empty bed with everything removed with the exception of two large stones.

After the plants are installed in Photo 3, the new garden is much more interesting with a combination of dwarf, mounding grasses and tall, upright varieties that will develop plumes at different times of the year. These blend in nicely with the rest of the existing grasses in the pool area. From the other side of the bed, Photo 4 shows a grouping of dwarf leucothoe 'Scarletta' which will provide 4 seasons of interest especially in the Fall and Winter when it takes on cranberry hues contrasting against the grasses. Photo 5 is from a different view.

For more information on pool side gardens, contact Paul Marini at Fine Gardeners.


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