Garden courses

Pruning garden shrubs and climbers with Stephen Smith

Ref: S1D10286


Book now

Places available

About this course

Pruning can often strike fear into the heart of the novice gardener, but rest assured this day covers formative, routine and renovation pruning for all types of shrubs and climbers.

Course Description

Pruning is such a vital element of gardening, and once mastered, is a skill that is a source of great satisfaction in the management of a garden.

This day-long course will outline the reasons behind different types of pruning on ornamental and productive plants. It will also provide you with the confidence to practise precise and accurate pruning across a broad selection of woody plants.

The course will illustrate how to prune for improved fruit and flower production, the maintenance of the ideal ‘natural shape’ in ornamental garden trees and shrubs, and cover the basic techniques used to maintain plant health and vigour across a range of plants growing in different situations.

Classroom demonstrations, student practice on a variety of containerised plants and an afternoon garden tour highlighting the successful use of pruning by professionals at West Dean Gardens will each combine to provide you with the ability to tackle pruning with confidence by the end of the course.


Timetable for one day courses

Students should arrive by 9am for registration.

Classes are from 9.15 - 5pm

Lunch is included.

Course Materials


  • Plant material for use by the students.

What students need to bring

  • Secateurs, gardening gloves, protective eyewear, boots and wet weather gear (if necessary).


Stephen Smith

Stephen has tutored in horticulture for over 25 years, and has nearly 40 years experience of practical gardening under his belt. He began as an apprentice gardener and started his teaching career at Capel Manor. For 10 years he was Landscape Manager at the Grosvenor Estate in London.

Courses of interest

Sign-up to be the first to know

Sign up to our Short Course enews to hear about new courses, late availability and get creative inspiration delivered straight to your inbox.