ForsythiaForsythia x intermedia
The forsythia is a hardy, deciduous, shrub with an irregular or rank-growing upright or arching habit. Forsythias should be given enough room to spread without topping the branches for part of their beauty lies in the graceful manner in which the branches grow. Its yellow flowers bloom early in the spring before the leaves appear. Late spring freezes may injure the buds reducing flower quality. The leaves are medium to dark green in summer turning green to yellow-green with an occasional tinge of burgundy in the fall. The forsythia tolerates a wide range of soils except permanently wet or exceptionally dry soil. The forsythia will flower best in full sun to partial shade. After a period of time, the forsythia will need pruning and moderate maintenance. Forsythias bloom on wood grown in the previous year. For this reason, pruning should be done in the spring immediately after flowering. The flower buds develop during the summer and fall, and fall pruning will remove them. However, if the buds are already formed, necessary pruning can be done 4-6 weeks before flowering time, and the pruned branches can be forced indoors. Pruning should follow the natural habit of the shrub removing old or dead wood. Cutting the older branches to the ground every year will cause new shoots to grow from the roots and renew the shrub. If the shrub is completely cut down to ground level, it will come back but will take 2-3 years to flower fully. For hedges, plant forsythia 4-6 feet apart.