The little Amelanchier provides colourful enjoyment the whole year round. Amelanchier come in the form of either a shrub or a small tree. It has a wonderful natural shape and it continually varies in colour. In spring, the snowy mespilus gets brown-red leaves and white flowers. Flowering takes place between April and May. After flowering in spring, the leaves turn green and the flowers turn into dark currants. These fruits are tasty for both humans and animals. In the autumn, the leaves take on beautiful autumnal colours of yellow or orange. With the right care, you can keep your Amelanchier beautiful for a long time. Pruning, of course, is part of that.
Why should you prune Amelanchier?
The Amelanchier is a fast grower, although it grows in a natural shape. It is therefore not essential to prune the tree. It is good, however, to rejuvenate the shrub from time to time to keep it flowering. The Amelanchier is also often pruned when the branches start to grow wild.
When should you prune Amelanchier?
Rejuvenate it in May
If you don't want your bush to grow too big and prevent it from wilting too much, you can rejuvenate it after it flowers, in May. In about three years you will have pruned the entire shrub. Take a good look at the bush before you start pruning. Select one in three, or a third, of the branches to begin with, from over the whole bush. Never prune only the outside. Divide it evenly and prune one third of the branches back to about 40 cm (from the ground). It's best to prune branches back to just above an outward-pointing bud. New shoots will grow from the buds. Over the following two years, prune the rest of the branches back, so that the whole shrub is rejuvenated.
Pruning in autumn or winter
To make an extra large tree out of your Amelanchier, you can crown the shrub. This means that you remove the lower branches to create a real tree crown. It is best to do this in the autumn or in the winter. Cut away the lowest branches around the bush with sharp, clean pruning tools. Make sure that you spare the branch collar by not sawing off low branches in line with the trunk. This is better for the health of the tree.
As with rejuvenation, do not cut off all thick branches at once. Cut thick branches about 10 cm from the trunk and thinner branches about 5 cm. The stump that remains of the cut branch can be sawn off further. But, again, keep enough distance from the trunk to avoid damaging the branch collar.
In addition to pruning the snowy mespilus in the winter, you can also prune it into a shape after it flowers. To keep an open crown, cut off dead branches once or twice a year. Crooked branches or wild shoots can also be removed.
Want to know more about pruning other garden plants, trees and shrubs? Check out the pruning blog for more information. Or would you like to prune your snowy mespilus this spring? Check out Bakker's pruning range to find everything you need.