Sunday, 6 November 2016

A More Reliable Souce of Information.

Today I searched the internet for answers to the following two questions: When is the best time to prune dogwood? and When is the best time to prune sage? The wide variation in answers made the exercise effectively worthless. Here are two examples:

Do not prune dogwood when the shrub is growing vigorously as this will cause it to bleed sap profusely and leave it open to infection. Dogwood should be pruned in the autumn or winter when the plant is dormant.

Dogwood should be pruned in early summer to encourage flower growth. June is favourite, but any time in the summer will do.

See what I mean?

Having spent ten years getting to know the plants in my garden on an individual and fairly intimate basis, I’ve started to get a feel for what they want me to do. I tried it last year on the massive broom which was starting to outgrow its own strength, and the following May it bloomed more magnificently than ever before. I was taking a bit of a risk because I’d been given widely conflicting advice by two supposedly expert gardeners, and had heard that broom is highly intolerant of pruning.

So dare I suspect that I’m learning to listen to my plants? I don’t know, but if I am, it demonstrates yet again that there are better sources of information than the internet.

(And by the way, Mr Dogwood says that he wants me to prune as soon as the current cold spell is over, and Mistress Sage wants me to leave her alone until early spring when there’s no danger of frost for at least a few days. So that’s the plan.)

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