Prune porch plants?

My front porch (or patio as we say in So. Cal) has some beautiful big plants that I got from a neighbor who moved.
When I got them, they were more "rounded", but now they have put out long branches. I am afraid to cut back, so I would appreciate you input.
See "front porch plants.jpg" on <alt.binaries.pictures.garden>.
Thanks
Persephone
PS - Is there a better way to direct people to the binary site?
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Persephone wrote:

Those are schefflera. Here in Hawaii, when planted in the ground, they can grow to tree size (I have one in my backyard that is HUGE. Towers over our two story townhouse.) You can cut them back, cut them down, do just about anything to them and they'll survive. I found one in a thrift store a few months ago covered in scale and cut it off to the top of the dirt and it's three feet tall now. I wouldn't recommend that normally but in this case it needed to be done.
Don't worry. They're pretty hardy and forgiving of mistakes. If you cut one of the woody stems, then more of the little growth will poke out at the bottoms like your one is doing.
Tracey
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Tracey wrote:

[Hope you are less busy and get a chance to read this message]
Tracey,
I am in Honolulu, and would appreciate if we can meet. Though I can use any help for my own well being at this place& time, main reason for my request however, is for the greater public benefit. I feel I am sincere with my intentions and pray such is the case.
Han-
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Belated thanks, Tracey. I'll get up my nerve one of these days to restore plant to "rounded" shape.
Persephone
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