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While the Skimmia can grow up to 7 m high in its original homeland, it only reaches a maximum height of 1.50 m in this country. Nevertheless, it can tolerate a cut now and then. But beware of the beginner mistakes!

The skimmies should be cut just before or during flowering

Prune during or shortly after flowering

In general, the skimmia should always be cut during or shortly after its flowering. This is the case in May/June. During flowering, you have the advantage that you can clearly see which specimens are male and which are female. But why is this important?

Do not remove female flowers

There are male and female plants in the Skimmia. The female specimens form the decorative fruits in autumn. But so that this can develop, the female flowers must not be cut off. Only the male inflorescences can/should be removed.

The female flowers of Skimmia are easy to distinguish from the male flowers. In contrast to the male flowers, which smell intensely sweet, the female flowers hardly have any odor.

It's better to just thin out and not cut back radically

A radical pruning should not be carried out on the skimmie. On the other hand, it is advisable to thin out or trim them occasionally. The reason: it grows extremely slowly at 5 to 15 cm per year. Due to this low growth rate, pruning is rarely required.

Thinning out causes denser growth. Cutting away old shoots prevents the Skimmia from wilting from below as it ages. In addition, annoying side shoots (at the base) should be removed. A shape cut is not necessary.

Multiply immediately by cutting

At the same time you can multiply the Skimmie with cuttings. However, do not use shoots with yellow leaves, as these are weakened and possibly diseased. The shoots for the cuttings propagation should be semi-ripe.

How to proceed:

  • Spring or late summer is the best time
  • Choose shoots that are 15 cm long
  • cut diagonally
  • Remove buds and flowers
  • remove lower leaves
  • plant in humus-rich soil and keep moist
  • put in a bright, warm place
  • quarter indoors for first winter


The Skimmie is poisonous! As a precaution, wear gardening gloves when cutting!

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