can i cut back burning bush now?

dave4242(z5 CT)May 28, 2010

We have 2 burning bushes that are encroaching on other plantings. They are probably a good 6 feet in diameter. Being that they are fully leafed out, if I were to cut them back to say 3 feet in diameter, how long would it take for them re-leaf out?

What time of year would be the best time to transplant them to another spot? Thanks.

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Yes, if you do it now then they won't flower and set fruit - which is good because then the birds won't spread them around (since this is an invasive plant in New England).

If you prune them now, they should be ok - they seem kind of hard to kill anyway.

Here is a link that might be useful: New England invasive plants profile for burning bush

    Bookmark   May 28, 2010 at 8:01AM
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dave4242(z5 CT)

Thanks. How long will it take to re-leaf out? I'd hate to look at just sticks all summer.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2010 at 8:14AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

personally.. i would get rid of it ...


you do not cut them to 3 feet ...

frankly.. this bush.. and by the definition of invasive [you can barely kill them if you want to].. can be run over by a truck.. and cut to the ground.. and i would not be surprised if it isnt back to 3 feet by the end of summer ...

dad had one on his driveway .... 12 to 15 feet tall.. 6 inch diameter trunk at the ground .... threatening to swallow the house ... cut to 3 inches .... and it came back gang busters ... but we are patient people ..... and we arent fixated on how many days that may take, as proved by my lack of recollection in that regard ...

my best advise ... cut it to the ground ... apply stump killer to the cambian.. and go get some nice flowering shrubs to replace them.. offsetting far enough from the cut trunk so that digging is not too hard. .. lifes to short to deal with ugly green bushes that threaten nature ...

and for a nickel ... i will tell you how i really feel about them ... darn birds plant them everywhere .. i kill them by the hundreds all over my lot ... the plants i mean.. lol ...

good luck


    Bookmark   May 28, 2010 at 8:48AM
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I'm not sure what Ken wrote above (I just can't read it), but don't worry about pruning it. Go ahead. It'll be fine and it'll leaf out pretty quickly. You'll see new growth well within 2 weeks. Best of luck!

    Bookmark   June 12, 2010 at 4:09AM
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You'll be fighting a continuous battle since this shrub wants to be quite large. You'll need to cut it back annually to keep it in bounds.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2010 at 11:27PM
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