Here are 5 basic tips for spring pruning of your plants:
1) Cut out dead, damaged and diseased wood. When trees and shrubs are leafless, it’s easier to see damage from last season.
2) Avoid spring-bloomers. Do not prune shrubs like forsythia, lilac, and others that bloom in the spring. Wait until they’ve bloomed before pruning.
3) Look for dormant buds. Make your pruning cuts just above a swelling bed, if visible.
4) Trim winter kill on twigs. Many trees and shrubs suffer from die-back over the winter. Prune twigs back to living wood.
5) Thin and rejuvenate. Clear out any remaining dead leaves, twigs, etc. from your plant so it has plenty of room to grow throughout the season.