Garden Border Maintenance by Kentcare


Border maintenance can be a very subjective topic and like many shrub borders, occasionally prickly!

This is a guide to what to do with your garden borders but more precise advice would come from an assessment of the areas concerned; call us now to make an appointment.

Maintaining borders is vital to maintaining a healthy, balanced and eye catching site. Borders can be filled with hedging plants, shrubs, decorative bedding plants or large trees. Some borders are used as secure fence lines others can simply act as a boundary from grass to paving.

Pruning Cutting

Many small trees and shrubs need no pruning.  Winter pruning is done on trees to thin out crowded branches or cut out diseased wood. Some small trees and shrubs will need to be pruned to control the size, improve flowering or encourage healthy new wood. Pruning takes place through the year depending on the flowering time of the shrub and the reason for pruning. Always take great care to be aware of any wildlife activity in the branches or bushes, nesting birds and other life can be disturbed, hurt or exposed to predators. By August and September most fledgling birds will have flown, but it is always worth checking first, especially in the colder months.

Pyracantha OGlow Field fare Bird (3)

Weed control

Weeds amongst small trees and shrubs are best forked out by hand taking care not to disturb their roots.  Spot treatment with a translocated herbicide will control perennial weeds. A residual herbicide applied in the spring will prevent any seedlings from emerging through the growing season.  For more information on Herbicide applications


Feeding trees and shrubs in the spring will encourage healthy growth particularly on poor soils. A dressing of fertilizer can be used before mulching. Some gardeners prefer to use compost or manure as this provides nutrient and improves the soil structure. For more information on Fertiliser applications


A mulch is any material which is applied as a cover to the ground. Mulching in the spring will enrich the ground, keep weeds down and conserve moisture through the summer. The most common mulch material under trees and shrubs is bark chippings or composted bark. Composted garden waste, leaf mould or manure can also be used and will also provide nutrient. Making your own compost could be an option to consider, Our Guide to Home Composting is here.

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