We have a couple barberry bushes, probably intermediate type, that have grown too big for the place where they are planted. There is a good amount of dead undergrowth. The base is established and gnarly. I would like to cut it back to the base and get all new growth for next year so that we can keep it both healthy and right-sized. Can it be cut back to the base? If so, when? In early winter? Thank you in advance. Linda S Hoffman
Pruning Barberry Bushes
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Dead growth can be removed in the summer.
Regular pruning should be done during winter or fall.
Barberry plants do well with a rejuvenation prune, so you can cut it back quite severely.
I personally cut back an 'ugly' Barberry last fall and it now will need a shaping prune this fall.