How to Prune Your Bird of Paradise

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

Learn how to prune your bird of paradise plant to keep it healthy and looking its best.

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Pruning your bird of paradise is essential to keeping the plant healthy and preventing it from becoming overgrown. While the plant does not require pruning, it will benefit from occasional trimming to remove dead or damaged leaves and branches. Pruning also encourages new growth, which can help the plant stay looking full and lush.

The best time to prune your bird of paradise is in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins. This will give the plant time to recover from any damage caused by pruning and produce fresh, healthy new growth in the spring.

When pruning your bird of paradise, be sure to use sharp, clean shears or a knife. Surgical instruments are not necessary and may cause damage to the plant. Make clean cuts at a 45-degree angle, taking care not to leave any jagged edges behind. While it is not necessary to sterilize your tools before each use, you should clean them with rubbing alcohol or soapy water between cuts to prevent the spread of disease.

When trimming dead or damaged leaves and branches, cut them back to the point where they meet a healthy part of the plant. If you are unsure where this point is, look for a spot where the bark is smooth and free of blemishes. Avoid cutting into any green tissue, as this can harm the plant. If you need to remove a large branch, make three or four smaller cuts rather than one large one. This will prevent the branch from tearing away from the main trunk and causing further damage.

After you have finished pruning your bird of paradise, water it well and apply a balanced fertilizer.

What You’ll Need

Pruning shears
A step ladder or something to stand on

The first thing you need to do is take a good look at your plant and decide how you want it to look. Once you have a vision, it will be much easier to start pruning. It’s ok to be a little ruthless when pruning your bird of paradise. These plants can take a lot of abuse and will still bounce back beautifully.

Start by removing any dead or diseased leaves and stems. You can also trim off any leaves that are brown or yellowing. If there are any especially long leaves, you can trimmed them back to make the plant look more compact. Once you’ve removed all the dead and damaged growth, you can start shaping the plant.

If your bird of paradise is getting too big for its space, you can prune it back quite drastically. Cut stems back to about 10-12 inches from the ground. This will encourage new growth which will be much fuller and more compact than the old growth. If your plant is looking a little leggy, you can also prune sideshoots back to about 6 inches from the main stem. This will encourage the plant to put out new growth that is more dense and compact.

As you prune, be sure to sterilize your shears between cuts with rubbing alcohol to prevent the spread of disease. When you’re finished pruning, give your bird of paradise a good drink of water and some fertilizer designed for tropical plants. With a little bit of love and care, your bird of paradise will soon be looking better than ever!


1.Start by removing any dead, brown, or yellow leaves. These leaves are no longer photosynthesizing and are using up valuable plant resources.

2.Next, cut off any flower stalks that have already bloomed. This will encourage the plant to put its energy into producing new flowers rather than into seed production.

3.Now it’s time to focus on the shape of the plant. Using sharp pruning shears, cut away any growth that is crowding or rubbing against other parts of the plant. Also remove any stems that are crossing over each other or growing in an unnatural-looking way.

4.Once you’re happy with the shape of the plant, you can cut back the remaining foliage by a third to a half. This will encourage new growth and make the plant look fuller and more lush.

5.Finally, give your bird of paradise a good composting and mulching using fresh organic material such as composted leaves or manure. This will help add essential nutrients back into the soil and conserve moisture levels around the roots of the plant


The best time to prune your bird of paradise is in the spring, after the danger of frost has passed. You can also prune in the summer if necessary. When pruning, always use clean, sharp tools to avoid damaging the plant. Make sure to remove any dead, diseased, or damaged leaves, stems, and flowers. It’s also a good idea to remove any seed pods that have formed.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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