Prune for Good Growth

This year I took on the responsibility for pruning our azalea bushes.  My husband has been dedicated to this since we bought the house over 15 years ago.  The offer was part of his Father’s Day gift.  Little did I realize how much I’d enjoy it and that I’d turn the task into a blog post.

I know a little about pruning, but there’s a reason this was my first time (unsupervised). I had some guideposts running through my head. Once I noticed the relevance to business growth, more metaphors started flowing.  This is an unrefined list of some of the questions and observations running through my mind while pruning the azaleas and boxwoods.   PS… no guarantees on how things will turn out. We’ll see, in the next few months.  

• This has gotten too big and out of shape!
• Where do I want to promote growth?  Cut here. Make space.
• Stand back to see the big picture.
• It’s easy to cut off the outer stems that are protruding above the surface. But you    
    might not want a smooth surface full of conformity.
• Sometimes you screw up and cut off a good one.
• When it’s a daunting job, take breaks. It’s tedious work and you need fresh eyes and
• Is this piece adding value and helping us grow in the right direction?
• Hard to choose which ones get to live and which are cut off—especially when they
    all look like they are doing equal work.  Which one is in the right position to be a
• Go back and forth from underneath at the trunk and outside from a few feet away.
• You don’t want big branches growing at the end of small twigs.
• You’ve got to cut off the suckers.
• Old systems get messy. Lots of legacy branches going this way and that.
• Sometimes you create some ugly exposed spots.
• It’s easy to see all the dead twigs when you lift up the surface branches.

Good luck on your pruning projects!  Let me know if you need some help.