how to prune last summer's thyme

charmedMarch 27, 2006

Now that Spring is here, I've been cleaning out the little (2' by 5') garden bed in front of my house. I'm not sure what to do with they thyme form last year -- it's basically just a bunch of woody stems with last year's leaves still on. I almost decided just to cut it back nearly to the ground and hope for the best, but thought I'd check here for advice first. I'm not an experienced or dedicated gardener -- I just have the little front bed and a small backyard in the city -- but I've been trying to make things as nice as possible. Thanks!

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CA Kate

I prune mine back a lot, but not to the ground. Like any shrub you need to leave enough stem so there is something to set buds.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2006 at 4:16PM
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teryaki(z5B NE OHIO)

My thyme's only a year old and about 3 inches tall. Advice on pruning please? I've never pruned anything.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2006 at 12:18AM
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CA Kate

3" tall? I'm assuming it's made a mat. Just sheer off the ends, which probably look a little ragged and bare anyway. How about a little fertilizer? Just a little tho'.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2006 at 1:02AM
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I have both creeping and upright Thyme's and always wait until I see new growth and then prune back just above this. This year my German Winter acted evergreen and since I pruned them nicely last fall so I won't again until I need shear back flowers...late spring when I will prune back pretty hard.
The Creeping Thyme (T. serypllum) was a little ragged looking... new growh was emerging from beneath and I just finished pruning it all back to this.
Upright Thyme does much better when regularily harvested or sheared back throughout the season...I haven't had any woody plants in the 3 years I've had them.


    Bookmark   March 31, 2006 at 10:40AM
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granite(z6 NC)

Prune in early summer following the blooming phase.

Prune in late fall to remove long woody stems.

Shape prune whenever, but definitely do a spring clean prune to remove dead areas and to shape the plant.

Herbs like haircuts

    Bookmark   April 2, 2006 at 8:05AM
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My Thyme grows upright. I have never be able to properly ID it. I prune hard in late spring. It is in the process of being trained as bonsai.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2006 at 8:54AM
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