According to Mark Roemer Oakland, spring is the season of change when the snow melts away and both plants and animals get busy. However, as the plants in your garden go active from their dormant stage, they could use a bit of extra help. Let’s check out plants that need pruning before spring.

The Plants

1. Upright Sedum – Upright sedums like the famous Autumn Joy are visual attractions across multiple seasons. Even when the flowers fade and fall off, the plant looks amazing with a different kind of charm, especially when the mounted caps are dusted with snow. While these are low-maintenance succulents, you need to prune them right before spring and make room for new growth by pruning the stems down to the base. Cut down the stems as close as possible to the base and you’ll be delighted by new growth after a few weeks with the full swing of the spring season.

2. Long-Stem Roses – There are thousands of variations of roses from different habitats and geographies. From grandifloras and floribundas to long-stem hybrids and mound-forming shrubs, all have different requirements. Among them, long-stem roses suffer from winter dieback and that’s why spring brings an opportunity to check for dead brown stems and living green tissues. While pruning long-stem roses, look for brown stems and cut them back to the green tissue diagonally. Make sure to leave around ¼ inches of length above the bud. The spring season is also a good time to thin out overgrown rose bushes and remove some of the thickest and oldest stems.

3. Redtwig and Yellotwig Dogwood – Yellowtwig and redtwig dogwood shrubs are a sight for sore eyes during the late winter and early spring seasons. During this time, the stems are exposed completely, and the bark takes on bright and vivid hues. It’s also a good time to prune out the oldest, thickest, and darkest stems to promote the growth of colorful juvenile stems. You may also look for dead and injured stems and use sharp loppers to cut them off close to the base.

4. Beautyberry – It’s hard to miss Beautyberry during the fall season. The shrub develops shiny pink or purple berries that adorn the branches. It also attracts a lot of birds and small animals who are trying their best to forage for food before the winter. However, the plant also suffers from significant winter damage and that’s why it’s necessary to prune it during early spring. You need to prune all the dead growth and sometimes, it means chopping the plant down as much as 6 inches to the ground. You don’t need to worry since the resilient plant will grow, flower, and produce berries during the spring season.    


Mark Roemer Oakland suggests that you prune the above-mentioned plants before spring or during early spring to help them grow properly. Make sure to use sharp hand pruners for stems that have a thickness of ¼ inches or less and loppers for thicker stems, up to half an inch. For woodier and thicker stems, you’ll need a sturdy bow saw.