How to Prune Forsythia Bushes

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The best time to prune a forsythia bush is when the blooms have stopped growing during the dormant period, and cutting out every third branch opens the bush up for more sunlight the following season. Trim a forsythia bush, never cutting off more than one-third of the entire bush at a time, with instructions from a sustainable gardener in this free video on gardening.

Part of the Video Series: Gardening: Pruning
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Video Transcript

Hi this Yolanda Vanveen and in this segment we're going to talk about how to prune forsythia bushes. Forsythia are so beautiful in the garden, they look like a fountain with beautiful yellow flowers that bloom so gorgeous in the late spring to summer and they're really a delight in the garden. But they do get kind of long and kind of gangly if you just let them grow wild. So there's some certain rules that you should follow when you prune them. First of all, you never want to prune more than one third of the plant at any one time. And because they are more of a bush they will just grow out the bottom and you'll have lots of branches. So when you have lots of branches coming out of the group, it's easiest just to cut one third of them out all the way to the ground. And then on the main branches, you'll notice too just by cutting some down one third or just cutting every third branch out all together, it will give it a lot more sun and then everything will grow a little bit better and the main branches will get thicker. And the best time to actually prune them is whenever they're not blooming. So in the fall or the winter when they're dormant, that's the very best time and then you'll find that they'll grow in the next year much fuller with lots more blooms and they won't look as lanky, they'll look nice and lush and full.


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