Cutting a plant right down may sound cruel, but it can sometimes be the best thing for a plant if it is looking straggly or has outgrown its allotted space.
Severe pruning to rejuvenate a plant is a fairly extreme measure, since plants will only respond if they have the ability to regrow from the base. For those which do, it allows them to remain in the home rather than being discarded.
Cutting the old stems off close to the base will provide strong, new replacement stems — which can be trained as they grow — and although flowering may be sacrificed for a time, the result is a much more attractive plant. Once the new buds have started to grow, trim off any dead stem, as it may rot.
- Use clean, sharp pruners to remove the stem in stages, particularly if it has been wound or tied around a frame.
- Cut down to 2—3 buds on each stem or 3 in. (7 cm) if no buds are visible. Water and feed the plant.