201203hsp_055 Benches can also be used to attractively fill large areas—even in places such as foundation beds where it isn’t the norm to have a bench. These can actually be a pleasing way to transform a gap into an area for rest.

In the face of an overgrown landscape, some might decide to cut their shrubs back hard. This is the Marine Corps barber approach. This type of renovation pruning can sometimes be effective, but it’s more likely to create butchered looking plants for the short term. Cleaning up larger, overgrown shrubs by pruning from the ground up, or by simply removing dead growth may be the percentage play – especially if you’re close to the wedding date.

Fresh cuts are always more noticeable on shrubs and trees as well, so for many reasons it’s probably wise not to do any major pruning right before the event.

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C.L. Fornari is a well-known gardening expert on the Cape and Islands. She is an author, a lecturer, and a radio host on numerous gardening subjects.

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