Winter Pruning Lawrence Wisteria

(Question)

Hello,

I live in Oakville, ON in Canada. It’s Nov. 7, and I am behind in my fall pruning this year. I have a lovely Lawrence Wisteria plant, and am wondering if Nov. is too late for “winter” pruning, which probably should have been done in mid-September. Obviously, I don’t want to sacrifice spring flowers. Should I just not prune it at this point in the season?

Thank you for your help

(Answer)

It is so nice to think about a spring flowering wisteria as the winter descends upon us. Your Lawrence Wisteria is a cultivar of the Wisteria floribunda or Japanese wisteria family. The “Wisteria floribunda buds are set on spurs in the fall and bloom in the spring so cutting any of these unnecessarily will compromise the number of flower buds” according to the Master Gardener Guide on Wisteria that I have attached for your reference. That said you could certainly shape your wisteria with a late winter pruning. Here is what they recommend at that time: “Cut un-pruned horizontal leader shoots back by one-half their length. Re-cut lateral shoots pruned the previous summer back leaving only two or three buds (3in or 8cm) for short flowering spurs. Remove any shoots coming out of the spurs.”

I have also included several excellent articles from Canadian Gardening and Fine Gardening on how to care for your wisteria year round for maximum blooms. Happy pruning!

https://www.torontomastergardeners.ca/index.php/factsheet/how-to-get-wisteria-to-bloom-a-toronto-master-gardeners-garden-guide/

https://www.canadiangardening.com/how-to/techniques/make-your-wisteria-bloom/a/1541

https://www.finegardening.com/how-to/articles/pruning-wisteria.aspx?id=87448