How and when to prune kangaroo paw


Kangaroo paw is a small plant belonging to the Anigozanthos genus, although they have their origins in Australia nowadays it has spread around practically the entire planet. Its name is due to the fact that the shape of its flowers and stems covered with hairs resemble the legs of a kangaroo. This exotic beauty of its flowers are responsible for the current popularity of the plant. How could it be otherwise we will see in this article how and when to carry out the pruning of a kangaroo paw, we will also take the time to analyze the most important cares that need to be carried out for this beautiful plant to develop healthy, strong and beautiful.


If you read to the end you will learn the best techniques for proper pruning, the right time to trim and the tools to do it. The article has no waste, I assure you. 😉

Note: Please note that the advice given here is general, this blog is consulted from many countries in the world, with totally different characteristics, what not all tips will be adapted in the same way in all cases. Once you finish reading the article it will be necessary to analyze all the information and apply what you have learned in the best way. If you have any questions, remember that you can contact us to make your inquiries.

1. Care of kangaroo paw


It is very clear that the pruning of Kangaroo Paw is nothing more than a plant maintenance technique, but as you can suppose tin is not nearly the only one. That is why in this brief section we will analyze some of the key cares that you need to take into account for the cultivation of this plant.

  • Lighting: they are plants that develop fully outside, and must be placed in full sun or semi-shade. In case you want to grow it indoors, select a very well lit room, otherwise it will not develop properly.
  • Cold: although they are able to withstand the cold, frost does not feel good. Therefore, if you live in places where it is common frost of less than -2 ° C, you will have to use it with special blankets, or if you have it in a pot, take it inside your house.
Kangaroo paws flowers – Source
  • Soil: one of the key points when selecting the soil is that it has good drainage capacity. On the other hand it should also be noted that they do not need soils with a lot of nutrients.
  • Irrigation: together with a soil with good drainage, you must carry out irrigation that never causes waterlogging. With one or two irrigations per week is enough, always taking into account the conditions of our climate.
  • Fertilization: they are resistant to dry periods, do not require soils with many nutrients, you can imagine that they do not require excessive fertilization. You can carry out a fertilization a month during flowering.
  • Pests and diseases: Kangaroo paws can be attacked by aphids, and by fungi if the humidity is excessive, which must be eradicated with specific products.
  • Pruning: finally this point could not be missed, which we will develop in depth in the subsequent sections.

2. Tools needed for pruning kangaroo paw


In the next sections we will see that pruning this plants is not complicated at all. And as often happens, easy pruning needs a small amount of tools.

In this case you can manage with simple hand pruning shears, it is more in many species (the smallest), you can perform pruning with stationery scissors. Keep in mind that the moment you make the cut is ideal to transmit diseases from plant to plant, that is why you must disinfect the blades before pruning and every time you change the plant.

On the other hand, when we carry out gardening tasks like this, some basic safety implements never go wrong. These can be a pair of gloves and glasses, this will protect your hands and eyes from any sharp elements.

2.1 Needed care of pruning tools

Try to perform the following care in your pruning tools to extend useful life.

  • Use the right tool for a job and avoid twisting or straining it.
  • Clean and oil tools regularly by wiping an oily cloth on blades and other surfaces.
  • Keep cutting edges sharp by regularly using an oilstone.
  • Wooden handles should be varnished or regularly treated with linseed oil to keep them from cracking or splintering.

Keep in mind that if you extend the life of your tools you will not be doing anything other than saving money. 😉

You may also be interested in knowing about pruning:

3. How to prune kangaroo paw


Carrying out the pruning of a kangaroo paw is not complicated at all and it will not take you long. For simplicity in the development of the article we have divided the necessary tasks in pruning into the following:

  • General Pruning of Foliage
  • Cleaning and sanitary pruning
  • Pruning of renovation of Kangaroo Paw

We will develop each of the following prunings below.

3.1 General Pruning of Foliage

These plants have a foliage made up of long green or gray-green leaves. They are perennial, that is to say that when winter comes they will not fall following the same green color.

Once a year it is good to perform a pruning of the kangaroo paw foliage, the ideal moment is when the plant has stopped flowering. This usually happens in late summer or early fall.

To carry out this pruning you can do it with shears or hand pruning shears. In case your plant has a considerable size you can also use an electric pruner, something that will speed up the task.

It is usually advisable to prune all the leaves leaving a third of their height. Carry out the cut with an inclination of 45 degrees, thus minimizing damage to the plant. In case your kangaroo paw appears small or with a slow development, a lighter pruning or pruning will suffice.

Pruning kangaroo paw
Miniature kangaroo paw – Source

With this pruning of the foliage we will encourage the plant to develop new shoots and allowing a better flowering during the next season.

3.2 Cleaning and sanitary pruning

As with most plants, Kangaroo Paw needs pruning that eliminates any dry and / or sick element. This will help in two key aspects; The health and beauty of the plant.

There is no doubt that the flowers look very beautiful during flowering, but once they start to wilt it does not happen the same. The moment you see that a flower is losing color or begins to wilt, cut it from its base. Removing withered forests will make the new flowers stand out better.

A good cleaning pruning depends directly on a good observation of the plant. Take your time and look inside the foliage for all the leaves and floral stems that tend to have a brown color. Cut these elements one by one from the base. Analyze if this bad condition is natural or comes from the hand of some disease or pest. Keep in mind that if the disease or pest is widespread, it will not be enough to prune the affected elements to eliminate it.

If you find leaves with only their brown or yellowish tips you can choose to just cut those tips. Similarly, keep track of these sheets in later days, if it begins to turn brown below the cut made, do not hesitate to remove it from the base.

3.3 Pruning of renovation of kangaroo paw

If you start to notice that the plant is not developing too much and / or does not look completely healthy, it may be that a pruning of renovation is a good option. As we said in the section of foliage pruning, this task can be carried out with shears, hand scissors or electric pruner (in larger plants).

As you can imagine the renovation pruning of Kangaroo Paw is a very severe pruning, eliminating all the foliage at ground level. What will generate it is a total state of inactivity of the plant in the cold season. And when it starts to get hot, this will give an impulse to generate new and stronger leaves and flower stems.

If the pruning of renovation is carried out, the plant does not develop strongly again in the spring, you should consider getting another plant to replace it.

4. When to prune kangaroo paw


The right time or time to carry out pruning depends on many factors, among them the most prominent factor is the type of pruning we are going to carry out. Let’s analyze the ideal time for the types of pruning we saw in the previous section:

  • General pruning of foliage: some experts indicate that the best time to carry out this pruning is barely stopped flowering, that is between late summer and early autumn, while others make it clear that it is best to do it at the beginning of spring. From this website we can say that in case the winters in your area are very light you can prune in early autumn, otherwise choose to trim in the first days of spring.
  • Cleaning pruning: in general there is no exact time to perform this pruning, rather it can be said that any time is good for cutting both dry and diseased elements. The latter with more reason given that the sooner we eliminate a sick element, the more likely it is that we will prevent the spread of such plague.
  • Pruning of renewal: to this type of pruning can be applied the same that we speak in the general pruning of foliage, since this is not another thing that a pruning of very severe foliage.

As you can see each pruning has its most recommended moment, also finding discrepancies between the advice of experts in the field, many times in these cases it is trial and error.

5. How to prune kangaroo paw video


As to end, I leave you this interesting video of the Daavid Turnbull channel where we will see how they carry out the pruning of Kangaroo Paw by using an electric tool (something that makes everything very fast).

You may also be interested in knowing about pruning:

So far we have come up with this brief article about how and when to prune your kangaroo paw, I hope that everything seen up to here has been very clear, otherwise or do not hesitate to contact us. 😉

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