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Pruning Evergreen Hedges

Q. When is the correct time to prune evergreen hedges?

A. March is actually a fine time to prune junipers or arborvitae that have been shaped into hedge forms. Before the plants put out new spring growth, you can shear your arborvitae, if necessary. Junipers can be tip-pruned instead of sheared in order to maximize their feathery qualities. Most dwarf conifers require very little, if any, pruning and definitely no shearing. Boxwood and yew hedges can be pruned in March unless they have suffered from winter dieback or winter burn. In that case, wait until the new growth comes in and then prune out all browned branches. They will require additional light pruning throughout the growing season, but avoid pruning in late fall.