Barberry Shrubs

Cutting Back Barberry Bushes


jeaniemarie added on August 29, 2016 | Answered

My barberry bushes are very woody on the inside and have just a layer of leaves on the branch ends. Can I cut back the barberries close to the ground and will they come back in fuller form? Thank you, Jean


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ANSWERS
Alisma
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on August 30, 2016

You can use what is known as "renewal pruning" for your barberries. Basically, in the first year you should select 1/3 of each shrub's branches and cut them back close to the ground, leaving the other 2/3 to support the plant. Then repeat the process for two more years until all the old branches have been cut back. Meanwhile, the shrub should put out new branches.

See the following article for more:

https://extension.psu.edu/plants/green-industry/news/2012/hacking-whacking-dealing-with-overgrown-shrubs

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