Do Emerald Green Arborvitae Need To Be Planted With More Space If They Will Be Topped

Question From: T. McConnell - Greenville, South Carolina, United States
Q: What is the proper spacing for emerald green arborvitae? We planted ours 24" apart based upon the planting label. We will be pruning these to stay at about 6-7' in height. Can they remain at 24" spacing or do we need to provide more space?

A: Topping these shrubs will make them grow more densely but should not increase their girth. Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy

Q: Thanks for replying. That's good to know. Considering that I have to maintain them at 6-7' in height should I be trimming these trees now or wait until they are the desired height?

A: The good thing about being a women is she is allowed to change her mind. In researching Arb issues I found a website that has some interesting information about arbs I think you should read regarding Emerald arg spacing and other issues. Information given on plant tags is covers how they usually grow. There are always exceptions. I would al so get advice from nurseries in your area as sun and heat do make a difference. I would only prune them in late winter or early spring. Since they are slow growers, the timing is up to you. Earlier is probably better. Hope this helps. Best Nancy

Comment: Yes, we can change our minds, and often do! I'm not sure if I missed something but I would like to read what you were referring to. However, I did not see a link to get me there. Can you please include a link to the site you found in your reply so I can make a decision about when and how to prune the Arbs. Of course I would opt to prune in late winter or early spring. Just need to know if it should be next spring 2016 or perhaps a future spring when the trees are the height and girth I need them to be. I thought I had read that it was best to trim a little each year instead of looping off large amounts later on. Less shock to them I suppose. Thank you Nancy. Have a wonderful day. I ordered your monthly email and look forward to receiving it.

Response: It's always best to take a little off each year. Here's the website. Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy