Is pruning just a matter of taste?

by Yvonne on November 7, 2013 · 0 comments

in Plants, Shrubs

My daily walks through our neighborhood often turn into landscape critiques. As the colors have turned, I’ve been noticing the many burning bushes and how they’re pruned or not.

burning bush

A burning bush (Euonymus alatus) pruned into a big ball to keep it in bounds

I dislike the look of the one above, but I do understand why it’s being pruned: to keep it contained and out of the neighboring driveway. But couldn’t it have been pruned more naturally and still have met that objective?

burning bush

A very open version of the same plant

burning bush

This burning bush hasn’t been pruned recently

The one above is growing in a really open habit and has been allowed to spread naturally. It doesn’t look like anyone has pruned it at all. To me, it’s much more pleasing in form, although some judicious pruning could take its size down a little and encourage it to fill in more.

I suspect that the shrub on our property (picture right) might have been pruned into a ball at one time, but it hasn’t been pruned over the past couple of seasons. It’s growing in a rounded, mounded shape, but one that I feel is much more pleasing and natural than the one at the top.

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