Q. Can an overgrown yew bush be revived?
Most conifers cannot be severely cut back to old wood, but yews are an exception. You can cut back your yew to about 1/4 of its size or even lower. Do this in early spring before new leaf growth. You will not see any buds in the old stems, so when they re-grow there may be some dead wood above the new growth. Cut this dead wood back to the new growth. Apply slow-release fertilizer and a layer of mulch around the plant after pruning. Within a year or two you will have a new shrub that can be pruned as desired.
For tips on a variety of gardening topics, see our Plant Information Guides.
- Courtesy of NYBG Plant Information Service