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Best time to severely prune Laurel Hedge


We have a large laurel hedge in need of a major cutback. I anticipate that it will be fairly unsightly once we have pruned this beast back to a manageable size for yearly maintenance. My question is, what is the best time to give it a major haircut so that it will green back up in the shortest time possible? I am in the Pacific Northwest of the USA. I have seen february suggested as a good time. Does this still apply to a major haircut? Also anyone know how long it will take to green back up or am I going to be looking at naked bark and stems for months?

Thank you!

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