Privet Pruning Question

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by JohnsonLawn, Mar 4, 2006.

  1. JohnsonLawn

    JohnsonLawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 400

    I have a client who has 4 hedge rows of Privet that are about 6 feet tall and 5 feet wide. One row is close to the road and obstructs the view of oncoming cars. The client would like these cut down to about 2 feet tall. The question I have is will these still bloom being the short. It seems to me that all that would be left would be the stalks of the Privet. My feeling is that this would be taking to much of the shrub and it would stress it. Can I successfully prune this back as much as 4 feet and still get future blooming. Thanks in advance.
  2. PSUturf

    PSUturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 663

    Remedial pruning is not recommended for privet (according to the Pruner's Bible).
    I wouldn't be to worried about cutting off 1/3 of the height if there was adequate foliage left below the cut line to help the plant recover.
  3. playnindirt

    playnindirt LawnSite Member
    Messages: 18

    Privet hedge can be prunned as much as you want. I have cut them right down to ground level and they have regrown fine. Never had any problems with any amount of prunning.
  4. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,112

    Yes this is bad for the hedge..remove enough for the
    people to be able to see and some off the top..if they want them that low I would recommend complete removal
  5. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,776

    You can cut it to the ground and it will be two feet tall by the fall. It is often done to revitalize old privet or to gain access to a back yard. I can think of nothing that regrows from drastic cutting than privet.
  6. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Have to agree 100%------------and I thought I was the only one that knew about the living gate :drinkup:
  7. Mr. Vern

    Mr. Vern LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 632

    Except maybe Oleanders!
  8. MarcusLndscp

    MarcusLndscp LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 634

    I too have cut privet down to the ground and it has always grown back incredibly fast. I've seen even more than 2' of new growth over one season...have at it.
  9. PlantSolutions

    PlantSolutions LawnSite Member
    Messages: 62

    Don't worry about the 1/3 rule. Cut it to 1ft/2ft or the ground and you will have nicer fuller hedges. Privet reacts better to extreme pruning and whats even better, you can prune them anytime from spring to fall.:clapping:
  10. Kate Butler

    Kate Butler LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 640

    Privet flowers are so inconsequential that I can't imagine anyone caring whether they bloomed or not. Yes, there are lots of individual blossoms, but nothing particularly spectacular.

    I have a client with an 80' privet hedge that goes from 6' to 8' every season. Even here in the far north country it grows quickly.

    I find that every year I must selectively cut (to the ground) about 25% of each plant to keep it from getting far too leggy and twiggy: to say nothing of being able to see right through it - not a client favorite where a hedge is concerned. Some of a single years' whips can be 6'.

    I'd go ahead and do whatever you and the client believe to be needed - the privet will grow back.

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