Summer pruning in August
August is such a beautiful month when we can expect fine weather. This lets us get some important jobs done, such as pruning.
- Climbing Hydrangea can be cut back flat against the wall after flowering.
- Topiary and other shaped shrubs like Buxus, Privet and also Lavender can be pruned back into shape.
- Cut some sprigs of your Lavender to dry while it is in full flower. Dried Lavender in a small cotton pouch in your airing cupboard will give a lovely fragrance to your towels.
- Give evergreen shrubs and hedges a last prune now before winter.
- And don't forget your deciduous hedges. They too will need to be pruned for the last time now.
- Deadhead Roses to prevent the production of seed (rose hips), which will exhaust them, then treat with some Rose fertilizer to maintain their strength.
- After the last flowers have wilted, the entire truss can be cut back to a well-developed leaf.
- New shoots of Wisteria can be cut back to about 15 cm.
- New Vine shoots can be cut back to the 4th leaf. As a special treat, wrap young Vine leaves around a bit of cheese and put them on the barbecue! You can enjoy this feast throughout the summer if you don't cut the shoots back all at once.
- If you want large grapes on your Vine remove about half of all bunches, and the smallest grapes from the remaining branches. Leaving one bunch per branch is usually best.
- Regularly remove faded Dahlia, Begonia and Canna flowers to stimulate new blooms.
- After the first winter pruning of your fruit trees, in May and June lots of suckers (small twigs that grow straight up) will appear, especially near where major pruning was done. These shoots take up a lot of water and nutrients that could be used better elsewhere. Now is good time to remove these suckers.
- Also now, thin out the fruits from your apple, pear and plum trees. Remove the smaller ones and the remaining fruits will get a better chance to develop.
- Treat your fruit trees to some extra trace elements and minerals this month with, for example, sea weed extract. During this growing period the trees will be more resistant to disease and fungal infections.
- After harvesting berries and currants these shrubs can be pruned back.