How to decide when to prune or trim your plants

How to decide when to prune or trim your plants

We often try to tidy up our space by getting rid of things that are unwanted or have not been used for long. Tidying up gives more room for keeping things that are useful. But suppose we don’t clean our space for a long time… Not even vacuuming… This ends up with dust everywhere. But does it stop here? No. The accumulation of dirt gives lots of room for the mini troublers – pests – to settle comfortably, with us! What would be our next course of action? We would clean the entire place and wipe all areas, ensuring there is no clutter to accommodate these little infesters. 

Well in the plant kingdom trimming refers to the removal of unwanted or overgrown parts while pruning is the complete removal of decayed, unwanted, dried-up parts that may hinder the growth of the plants. While trimming takes care of the overall appearance of the plants, pruning is essential for the overall health of our green friends. Let us see these in detail!


The role of a gardener is very crucial as his job is not only about planting, watering and fertilising alone. He needs to maintain his garden so well and healthy. Raising a happy plant is quite a challenge. The plant first sows must adapt very well to the soil and the place and then should be taken care of so that it grows into a healthy one. 

Sometimes, the healthy plants boast so much with their growth that they begin to bother their companions! The rooting, branching, the size – all these may be good and in full health, but it may affect the neighbouring plants or sometimes break open the pavements and walls too!

Here is what the gardener adopts for trimming! He uses his tools skillfully to remove the overgrown parts and ensure the plant is cut to a manageable size.

A creative gardener even shapes up the plant and gives “spa-like services” to his green clients. The well-trimmed plants give a tidier and more beautiful look to the space.


A very well-maintained plant does not always remain healthy! Well, exposure to climatic changes, infestation from unhealthy neighbouring plants or for some unknown reasons, they do fall sick and this shows up as decaying or dead leaves, flowers or even branches. However, the plant’s overall health can be restored at the earliest by removing these decaying, dead, infected parts. A skilled gardener even identifies the abrasions caused by the tangled branches and removes them at once, before it encourages the settlement of pests and insects.

Thus pruning is an effective way of “trimming” the dead or harmful parts of the plant. This method is more selective as it is done to save the plant from dying. This method avoids the spread of diseases to other plants.

The time of pruning depends on the type of plant. The Lily plants get pruned after their blooming season. Rose plants need regular pruning. The ornamental foliage plants may get pruned before the spring.

Trimming or pruning both encourage the growth of new shoots and lush growth. 

While trimming gives a good appearance, pruning takes care of the overall health of the plants!

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