Histone lysine methylation is an evolutionally conserved modification involved in determining chromatin states associated with gene activation or repression. Here we report that the Arabidopsis SET domain group 8 (SDG8) protein is a histone H3 methyltransferase involved in regulating shoot branching. Knockout mutations of the SDG8 gene markedly reduce the global levels of histone H3 trimethylation at lysines 9 and 36 as well as dimethylation at lysine 36. The sdg8 mutants produce more shoot branches than wild-type plants. The expression of SPS/BUS (supershoot/bushy), a repressor of shoot branching, is decreased in sdg8 mutants, while UGT74E2 (UDP-glycosyltransferase 74E2), a gene associated with increased shoot branching, is up-regulated in sdg8 mutants. The altered expression of SPS/BUS and UGT74E2 correlates with changed histone H3 methylation at these loci. These results suggest that SDG8 regulates shoot branching via controlling the methylation states of its target genes.