Question: How do I prune my Carolina jessamine? It’s become bare and ugly at the bottom of the plant. All I see is stems from the top of the fence downward.

Answer: There will usually be strong new canes that will sprout out around the base of the plant in the spring and early summer. Let those develop, “pinching” out their growing tips to make them branch and stay more compact. You can also prune all the really lanky canes back near the ground immediately after the plant finishes blooming in March. Apply a high-nitrogen fertilizer, one pound per 100 square feet of bed space, to encourage new growth.

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