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Dying cistus

(12 Posts)
Polly48 Fri 26-Oct-18 13:48:36

I have a cistus about a metre across which has a dying / dead patch in the muddle. Should I leave it / see what happens in the Spring? Cut out the dead branches?

Polly48 Fri 26-Oct-18 13:53:54

It’s on the left in this pic from earlier in the year smile

Polly48 Fri 26-Oct-18 13:54:42

Oops, forgot to load pic

Jalima1108 Fri 26-Oct-18 14:54:44

Perhaps it's suffering rather belatedly from the drought conditions earlier in the year although they do like a sunny position.
I think I would give it a severe pruning and see what happens. We had a cistus years ago and it thrived but didn't appreciate being moved; we bought another one which never thrived but was apparently in the wrong place, not sunny enough.

Jalima1108 Fri 26-Oct-18 14:56:03

ps cut the dead part right out but try to save some of it to keep a shape.

Polly48 Fri 26-Oct-18 15:22:50

Thanks Jalima - would you chop it about now, or leave til Spring?

cornergran Fri 26-Oct-18 15:40:26

I think they are supposed to be pruned after flowering. There’s a distant memory of being told to prune them like lavender, so not to cut into the old wood. Think I’d play a wait and see game with it, but that’s what I do with most garden issues. smile.

Jalima1108 Fri 26-Oct-18 15:42:47

eeek - I've just read that they should not be pruned too much.

However, you could start by cutting into what looks like dead wood and see if there is any life lower down. If so, chop that far, but if it looks dead further down then chop that out.

Jalima1108 Fri 26-Oct-18 15:44:52
you could strike some cuttings just in case

Polly48 Fri 26-Oct-18 17:41:48

From the link, it seems to say you can prune it, even into old wood, which is unusual / unlikely advice. I think I’ll wait and see smile

Jalima1108 Fri 26-Oct-18 20:49:45

I should add that I've not managed to keep one yet ….
But I have never pruned one drastically either.

SpringyChicken Fri 26-Oct-18 21:53:20

I'd be surprised if the summer drought is responsible for the die back. Cistus grow in hot, dry Mediterranean areas. I thought they liked light pruning - like lavenders. They do deteriorate relatively quickly and cuttings should be taken every. three or four years to replace the mother plant. I think the plant might be on its way out. You might as well cut out the dead wood anyway, you have nothing to lose, but scratch the bark with your thumb nail first to see if it is green underneath. If so, it isn't dead. Just a long shot, could a dog have cocked its leg over it and scorched the centre?