Pruning Wisteria is not essential where they have room to roam and colonise a wall frame or sturdy trellis. Wisteria will wander and flower in this situation without any pruning. However, if the Wisteria is growing in a confined space, or at least needs to be constrained, then pruning will be necessary as set out below.
It is important to prune your Wisteria at the right time. We show you when and how to prune wisterias.
To keep Wisteria under control they should be pruned twice each year. Prune like this to ensure maximum flower and the pruning will also keep your Wisteria within set limits!
This involves pruning all of the current side-shoot growths back to within 30cms of the main lateral. This should leave 4-6 leaves on each side-shoot. Any side shoot required to extend or train the framework should be left and trained as required and not be pruned!
January/February, prune the Wisteria
side shoots back even further - 6-10cm long,
leaving only 2 or 3 buds on the side-shoot. These will be the flowering spurs on your wisteria. There is no need to prune the wisteria to an outward facing bud.
These pruning operations should be carried out each year. The only shoots to be left 'unscathed' are those which are required to extend the size or direction of your wisteria.
A wisteria side shoot - lateral, ready to be cut back hard in late winter pruning (Jan/Feb).
The lateral - having been cut back to 3 buds from the main branch leader. The pruning cut is immediately above a bud.
A great specimen of wisteria, that has been pruned correctly. learn about the general care of Wisterias here.
Regular Pruning of this wisteria is essential, for whilst it has the space to roam unhindered, the pathway below would soon be rendered unusable as the wisteria would soon take over the whole arch.
The main reason for pruning wisterias in the manner described above, is for all of the 'energy' of the plant to be focussed on the flower buds - near the main stem, and not diverted into the stem growth system at the expense of flowers. If you decide not to prune your wisteria, then over the years the flowers on the plant will become smaller - for the energy will be focussed on providing new stem growth. So, prune you Wisterias regularly to be sure of larger flowers.
By David Hughes - firstname.lastname@example.org