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Pruning Honeysuckle??

Posted by womanhead 5, Northern Indiana (My Page) on
Sat, Mar 31, 07 at 15:34

I have a wonderful fence full of honeysuckle. It is not the invasive type, and I LOVE this plant! I want to treat it well, and from what I have read it should have it's "dead wood pruned out" Does anyone have a bit better detailed source I can read or can someone give me a bit of guideance? It has been about 6 years since it has been pruned and is huge and I suspect much is old dead stuff. I'd hate to just start cutting away. Thanks, Lauren

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

  • Posted by jimshy z7 Brooklyn, NY (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 4, 07 at 8:46


You can go after this genus with a chain saw and it'll pop right back up. In fact, most honeysuckles need a severe pruning every couple of years to encourage new shoots and rejuvenate the plant.

However, since you've got it on a fence, you may want to avoid the chainsaw, and focus instead on the three D's: diseased, damaged or deranged growth. Old, woody stems can be cut back hard; anything that's died off or has got galls or fungus or doesn't look healthy gets cut back to the ground, and any stems that are headed where you don't want them to can be cut back to a proper area as well.

It'll look really bare for a few weeks, but new growth will start up right away and you'll be back in honeysuckle heaven in no time. Enjoy!


RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

Great! Thanks much. As soon as this last blast of snow passes I will get to it. Again, Thanks for the answer. Lauren

RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

after a few years at our place i got a brainy idea to prune our honeysuckle down to about 6 inches or so, there was alot of dead wood. and the next spring it came back so beautifully!!! i was so surprised. i can kill about anything. Lol.

RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

  • Posted by irabia South Africa (My Page) on
    Wed, Apr 25, 07 at 11:12

We have a honeysuckle bush. When we moved into the house about 6 years ago, It was already 4 meters wide by 5 meters high, rambling along the telephone wires..

I started off carefully cutting and eventually hired someone to just cut the whole thing to shape saying "if it dies, it dies" - it's still there - it's become a hedge, about 8 meters long and 3 meters high... still blooming away year after year. It seems quite the sucker for punishment.. lol..

RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

I have a honeysuckle growing along my fence, and it sure does grow. I also have a climatis growing on the same fence, and the honeysuckle has invaded the climatis a bit. I am concerned that it will kill the climatis. When can I safely cut back the honeysuckle in order to prevent it from killing the climatis. I love the honeysuckle and how it grows so well and covers a good portion of the fence, but I also love the climatis. In the past, I have just left both of them alone until spring, and then tried to remove the dead vines. I may have to do more than that this time. Thanks

RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

I have 6 arnelds red honeysuckle bushes along my fence. as the years have gone by the top is the only healthy part of the bush. two thirds of the bottom is dead and bare. Do they have a life span? Where do I start in cutting off parts of it. I don't want to lose the privacy they give. Help.

RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

Relax, Dan. All that's happened is that the lower leaves are being shaded by the top, and have fallen off. Happens to a lot of shrubs that are wider at the top than at the bottom.

I would say, follow the advice given above by Jim Shy and others about pruning. If you cut the top 2/3 off, it will branch below the cuts and be refreshed. Usually, where a cut is made, two shoots will grow where one was before, so the shrub or vine is thickened up.

If you are scared to do this, cut the top off a small portion of it. Then when you see that it indeed did grow back, you will have the courage to cut the rest.

RE: Pruning Honeysuckle??

I pruned my honeysuckle once (its on a trellis) and there were few flowers the next year. I'm afraid to prune it again and a worker at my local nursery who I was asking how/when to prune it said don't. Everyone here is saying just cut it back. I'm confused.

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