Differences Between Shrub Trimming and Pruning

Although often used interchangeably, trimming and pruning are two similar acts that have very different purposes. And for beginner gardeners, knowing the difference between them can be the lynchpin to your plant’s health. If you’re unclear about the definition of these terms and what sets them apart from each other, this article will review the difference between shrub trimming and pruning.

What Is Considered Trimming?

Trimming is the act of removing excess branches and leaves to maintain the overall shape of the bush. If you’ve ever seen someone shape a topiary, that is considered trimming. But trimming isn’t done solely for aesthetic purposes, as it also helps promote the shrub’s overall health and size by stimulating the growth of new branches. So, while trimming keeps your shrubs, bushes, and hedges looking nice, it also helps them grow thicker and greener.

What Is Considered Pruning?

Like trimming, pruning also involves the removal of branches while allowing the plant to flourish, but what you cut off and why is completely different. When you prune a bush, you’re specifically removing dead, loose, or infested branches, buds, leaves, fruits, or flowers. While this can also be used in topiary design to train the plant to grow in a particular shape, pruning is more for the health of the plant rather than the look.

What Equipment Is Necessary for Trimming and Pruning?

Some of the biggest differences between trimming and pruning is the equipment used. Because pruning requires a watchful eye, you’ll more often use hand shears and lopping shears, with lopping shears used to remove thicker branches. For trimming, you’ll want to work with a tool that will help you shape the overall plant, which usually means breaking out the hedge trimmer. While you can use shears to trim, remember that the act of trimming is to keep the shape, and doing so with only a pair of hand shears can take quite some time.

Thankfully, the difference between trimming and pruning is pretty simple, but the act itself may not be, especially if you have large shrubs or hedges. If you need help keeping your bushes in shape, Hernandez Lawnscape provides shrub trimming services, so you don’t have to worry about keeping your plants in shape.

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