We planted shrubs about 2 1/2 years ago. they have stopped growing. Will cutting them back help them grow?
they are like 2 foot tall and have just stopped growing...get full sunshine all day, and we water them maybe once a week. they are well in the ground, no roots showing...help???
- Anonymous1 decade agoFavorite Answer
Sometimes shrubs will stop growing when they reach the end of the safe zone, ie. the area that was improved when they were planted. Say you added bone meal or peat moss when you planted. Then when the roots spread they reach an area which is not so fortified and built up and they stop. Why go farther when all the good stuff is here? Sometimes you can help this problem by drilling a hole at the drip line (where the leaves end) around the shrub, inserting tubing or a pop bottle and puttting diluted fertilizer down there to encourage the roots to go farther. Otherwise, you would need to ask yourself what might have changed in the growing conditions. You don't say what type of shrubs they are. They may simply be dwarf varieties. Or maybe that's as big as they get in your area. Is the weather different this summer than it was the last 2. I know that here, where I live, we had 2 wet summers followed by this really hot one. So some things that liked the last 2 summers hated this one. Hope this helps.
- sonomanonaLv 61 decade ago
It would be helpful to know what kind of shrubs you planted. There are some that are actually full-sized at 2 feet. Others, especially some of the evergreen types, are slow-growing.
Do they look healthy? If the form of the shrubs is OK - not weak and spindly-looking - I wouldn't do much pruning. Fall is not a great time for cutting back, because if you do get new growth, it will be fresh and tender and vulnerable to the cold. Instead, think about whether the shrubs are getting adequate nutrients. If you live in a climate that has cold winters, don't fertilize the shrubs now, because fertilizing will cause tender new growth that will be easily damaged by frosts and freezes. But do plan on using a good general purpose fertilizer in spring. In the meantime, you can improve the soil and give them shrubs a very slow and gradual feeding by adding compost. Water the shrubs deeply, so that they water soaks down deep into the soil. If you are only watering so that the only top few inches of soil gets wet, the roots will not penetrate deeply into the soil, and they will be much more vulnerable to both drought and cold. The roots will seek the moist soil, so if you water deeply, the roots grown deeply, and the plants will be much healthier. After a deep watering, spread an inch or 2 of compost around the base of the shrubs. The compost will help keep the moisture in the soil, as well as keeping the soil temperature more even.
I don't think cutting them back is the answer. Just take good care of them until spring and see if proper watering and good fertilizing helps.
- CosmosLv 41 decade ago
Maybe that's the max height? I can't say much without knowing what kind of shrubs you have. Trimming the top encourage the plants to grow sideways. (Branching out a lot.) I kind of suspect the roots bound, though. When you planted them, did you make sure to loosen the roots after you pull it out of the pots? It's important to do that in order for the roots to stretch out.
- Michael KLv 61 decade ago
Depends on the type of shrub, but generally speaking, no, cutting them back will not help them grow. Fertilizer will.
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- 1 decade ago
add mic.grow to them now,only trim them back in spring,if you trim them back now,they may not make it through the winter.just now remove all dead pcs only.good luck