Japonica, also known as Japanese flowering quince, is a drought-tolerant, deciduous shrub which grows in sunny or shade places in the backyard. Due to its early flowering, it attracts hummingbirds and butterflies. Hardy to USDA hardiness zone 4, the shrub grows in virtually every soil form except high alkaline soils. While the prolific early spring flowers produce bitter fruits suitable for jellies and preservesthe tree is also a dense, thorny mass of twiggy branches. To maintain a flowering pruning after the spring flowers fade is an necessity.
Put on pants and long sleeves gloves and safety glasses to protect your skin and eyes in the branches. Place your bin nearby so you handle the branches as small as possible.
Prune the suckers using loppers or the pole pruner. Cut on the branches into brief sections and place in the green bin instantly.
Reach into the bush together with the pole pruner and cut out any dead branches. Maneuver a pair of barbecue tongs that will assist you pull and grasp the branches.
Reduce the growth removing the branches using loppers or anvil pruners. Next year’s flowers will blossom on the new growth of the summer; prune immediately after the spring flowers fade.
Shape the remaining branches of the shrub as needed to decrease the overall size of the bush. Remove up to one third of the branches to promote vigorous growth.