Pruning Hypericum calycinum |
Rose of Sharon | St Johns Wort
Hypericums are a wide range of garden
shrubs, but generally fall into two groups as far as pruning is
concerned. St Johns Wort and Rose of Sharon types.
The shrubby varieties of Hypericum
such as Hypericum 'Hidcote' should be pruned in spring - March or April
depending upon area and weather conditions. The low growing Hypericum
calycinum - better known as St John Wort - should be pruned hard in late winter or very early spring.
Pruning later in the season
may rob you of flowers for that year - although pruning
St Johns Wort even as late as
end of May will still give you plenty of flower - but later in the
This type of Hypericum flowers on the
ends of new shoots, so the more new shoots you can get the plant to
make, the more flowers you will get.
Advice and Information on How and When to prune this group of
The best way to prune Hypericum shrub
varieties, is by cutting all growth back to within a few inches of
ground level. It will soon grow back to near its original size within
one season. This will ensure that you get a well shaped shrub, with
plenty of new healthy shoots that will be a mass of flower later in the
year - normally starting July. Alternatively, simply trim off last
season's flowered growths.
Dead heading the flowers should not be
carried out with the varieties that have attractive fruits such as H.
x inodorum 'Elstead', Hypericum
See also -
Left - Hypericum calycinum - Low growing
: Right - Hypericum Elstead - A shrubby Type
Hypericum calycinum - St Johns
Wort - Rose of Sharon
- is also a shrub - but low growing and often seen in roadside
plantings - that can be pruned back hard. There is no finesse needed in
pruning this variety. If you have a large swathe of them as groundcover,
simply run a rotary mower over then - set at the highest setting. Or you
can use a heavy duty strimmer. Hedge clippers - shears - will also do
the job. The aim is to get rid of all the existing growth by pruning
down to ground level or just above.
It will not be a pretty sight once done, but
within a week or so, the bright green new growth will start from the
base and soon giver the ground cover plant that St Johns Wort is known
Pruning Hypericum calycinum should be
carried out in late winter - or early spring - and is a great start to
the gardening year! It can either be pruned this way each year, or every
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By David Hughes -