colorado spruce

Discussion in 'Gymnosperms (incl. Conifers)' started by cam, May 29, 2004.

  1. cam

    cam Member

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    Location:
    Mississauga, Ontario
    We just had a 6 ft Colorado Spruce planted by a local nursery in the front yard and noticed that it has 2 leader branches starting to form. Should I leave these or should I trim one off? If so which one?
     
  2. jimmyq

    jimmyq Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Metro Vancouver, BC, Canada.
    Your new tree may benefit from removing one leader and retaining the other, it may not be the best thing to do either. You should go back to the nursery and see why they sold you a tree with two leaders. They or the growers of the tree if it wasn't the nursery that sold it to you should be responsible for properly pruning and producing a correctly shaped and healthy tree. Check also to see that the root flare is visible and the tree is planted at the correct depth, look at the old pruning wounds if there are any and make certain they have been made properly.
     
  3. cam

    cam Member

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    The tree was planted approximately 2 months ago by the nursery, at which time, it only had 1 leader but now that it's forming new growth, I've noticed two upright leaders side by side. How do I know which one to cut?
     
  4. mr.shep

    mr.shep Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Location:
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    I've seen fastigiate forms of Picea pungens develop up to 5 leaders
    on the same tree in the past. Eventually one will take over and be
    your central leader depending on the variety. We have a Picea
    pungens 'Fat Albert' that developed 3 leaders at one time and in
    about 5 years there was only one central leader. It is unusual but
    not uncommon for a seedling to produce more than one leader but
    your tree is not large enough yet to be overly concerned about that.
    If the tree was twice its current size and it seemed to you then that
    the tree is not balanced then you might want to cut a few inches
    back on one of the leaders but for now it may very well be a little
    too early to do that. It is generally best to let the tree decide which
    leader it wants to have. In most cases you will glad that you did
    leave that decision up to the tree. As long as you are getting good
    growth I would not worry about more than one leader for a while.

    Jim
     
  5. cam

    cam Member

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    Thanks very much for your response. I will certainly heed your advice.
    Cam
     

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