The best time to prune privet hedges depends upon the age of the hedge. Young hedges should be pruned in early spring, with continued pruning until late summer. Established hedges are pruned after they flower in mid-spring. Formal privet hedges may be pruned continually from early spring to late summer.
Privet hedges thrive in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones 6 through 8. They show very aggressive growth and are considered invasive in many areas. Birds eat the privet hedge's seed-filled berries and spread the seeds over large areas. Deadheading the white flowers in late spring prevents berry formation and limits the spread of the hedge.