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Young Maple Pruning Trunk and Branches

Discussion in 'Homeowner Helper Forum' started by AudioGuy17, Nov 6, 2019.

  1. AudioGuy17

    AudioGuy17 New Member

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    Hello,

    We have a young maple tree in our backyard which has been growing taller for the last 2 years since first discovered as a sapling. My concerns are that there are multiple trunks and it's not shaped properly. Not knowing much about this, it seems it is in dire need of some pruning. I'm not certain on approach, even after spending some time on various sites and reading other threads on this forum.

    I'm trying to understand is now a good time to prune? I'm in the suburbs of Chicago.

    What and how much should I prune?

    What areas would make the most sense to do first?

    Thanks.
     

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  2. TNTreeHugger

    TNTreeHugger Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I Love clump maples - I've trained quite a few volunteers in my yard as multi trunk. Here's one of mine... now
    2019.JPG
    and three years ago
    clump 1.jpg
    Yours though, still has a good central leader, so if it were in my yard, I would cut off everything below the green "X" in the photo, clear back that mulch from the base, and wait and see how it fills out in the spring. Right now, to me, the top is looking kind of leggy and spindly. If it still looked that way next year, I would cut it back to about 2" above ground level and let it come back as a clump. I like to leave 3, or 5 good trunks and let it grow another season or two. If it still doesn't look good, get rid of it. Maples are a dime a dozen and are cheap and easy enough to replace.
    If you are wanting a nice single leader tree, go to a good nursery and pick out a high quality specimen. ..then again, if that's what you want, save yourself a lot of time and get rid of this one now and replace it.
    tree_2a.jpg
     
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  3. ATH

    ATH Addicted to ArboristSite

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    CacaoBoy and TNTreeHugger like this.
  4. AudioGuy17

    AudioGuy17 New Member

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    Thank you both for your responses.
     

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