Trimmers just top the shrub, encouraging new growth near the cut. Walk along as you trim, so you can keep your eye on the developing shape. How to prune topiary. Make cuts to thicker branches angled downward, away from the base of the bush, using hand held trimmers. If you haven’t tried topiary before, making box balls is a great way to start. Rosemary withstands a lot of pruning, so don’t be afraid to clip away. For complex topiary, gradually shape the plant over time by removing a little bit of the shrub during each training session. Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map! Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →, garden shears closed image by Kathy Burns from, Texas A&M University Extension: Follow Proper Pruning Techniques, Iowa State University Extension: Boxwood: A Versatile Evergreen. For example, if you are making your topiary into a cone, choose a boxwood that already has a pyramid shape. Regular trimming is important for a couple of reasons: First, if the plant grows too much away from its basic shape, the core will become shaded and die out. The inner limbs need air and sunlight, so cut back along the branch just above new growth or at the plant base; avoid electric trimmers for this. For example, if you are making a cone, work outward from a central stem. Cut the plant into the crown shape you want. You can train climbing greenery sprigs to cover topiary frames in many shapes. The next step is to be sure that you have the right tools for the job. Avoid pruning in a drought, or in the middle of summer. Also check the shape from a distance at regular intervals, to make sure the shape is in proportion. It probably don’t have any leaves left. Mix a solution of one part bleach and nine parts water in a bucket. Feb 20, 2017 - How to Make a Bush Shaped as a Ball With Trimming. For example, a zebra can end up looking just like a dog, but an elephant is much harder to mistake. Trimming bushes and round ball bushes is a task many dislike. Cut back the young current season’s shoots (which are a paler green) when they have reached 8-10cm long. DON’T Forget to Maintain Your Tools. It is best to let the crown grow naturally, but you can shape it into a ball if you wish. Use this solution in between trimming each shrub to avoid the spread of diseases. Pruning any more can harm the bush. Dull blades can damage branches, creating tears that lead to … This will sterilize the tools. Cut back to two leaves from the base of the new shoot. Topiary shapes range from simple spheres, cones and squares to fanciful designs such as peacocks, bears and even faces. If that is too tricky, you can purchase predesigned wire animal shapes that are sold at some home and garden stores. Cut a piece of baling wire with wire cutters to the size plus 1/2 inch. The wind is its worst enemy so find a protected spot with plenty of light. Put both ends of the wire in the dirt to keep it in place, with the wire pressing against the bush as you prune as a guide and to help you achieve the rounded appearance. You can also cut the bush into a natural looking tree shape. You can cut an existing bush into a ball shape, maintain it in size, and shape it when you make a .… Use 2 stakes as a guide while you level the shrub. Her work includes writing website content and small client projects. If you're a hobbyist who practices topiary, you can prune trees and shrubs into fanciful shapes. Many varieties of shrubs are good candidates to turn into single stemmed specimens. This will sacrifice flowers and fruit and requires more consistent maintenance than a natural habit.