Q. When should I hard prune overgrown yews?


Yews (Taxus) are very tolerant of pruning as new growth will develop from old wood. Yews can be shaped by pruning through the spring and summer but do not prune in late summer or fall.Yews need to be planted in well-drained soils. Poorly drained soil (such as clay soils or soils in low areas) is the “kiss of death” to yews. Yews are very tolerant of pruning. Old yews can be rejuvenated by cutting into wood with foliage but it will take several years for the plant to regrow and assume an acceptable appearance. Due its toxicity to humans, yews should not be planted around playgrounds or other areas where children (or livestock) may be tempted to eat the foliage, bark, or seeds; the red fleshy portion surrounding the seed, the aril, is not poisonous. Deer relish yew foliage without any ill effect – too bad.


Hope this helps.


  • Last Updated Aug 07, 2018
  • Views 22
  • Answered By Anita Finkle

FAQ Actions

Was this helpful? 0   0

Contact Us with your Question by Email

Can't find an answer in our FAQ? Try our Plant and Gardening Guides.

OR, a plant expert will answer your individual plant and garden questions if you contact us by email or use the Quick Form below. Click on the link to send us an email:

Or Submit a Quick Question for a Plant Expert Here

Your Question
Your Info
Fields marked with * are required.