Hello, I currently have a small cork oak (Quercus suber) plant, about 10 inches (25 cm) tall, planted in a few gallons-pot. It's growing at its pace and now has put out a side shoot, near the base. That same shot is growing quite fast while the central one seems like it isn't (as of now, it however increased during time). I'd like to know if I'd consider this plant (or most plants) like an array of solar panels with a shared battery (so the more panels/leaves you have connected together, the more energy it will produce) or there is no comparison like this between leaves/solar panels so I'd have the same growth rate either if I leave this side shoot or if I remove it (with the only difference being if the plant will put any resource in growing, it'd more lively grow the central shoot). As probably most of you do, I'd like this plant to get big as fast as possible (though I know it's not a fast-growing one), so if say, leaving this side shoot will improve its growth rate by means of more leaves doing photosynthesis, I'd gladly leave it alone and eventually cut if off when I will have to begin shape this plant into a proper centered tree instead of a forked one near the base (which I don't like that much). Thank you very much for your time. I apologize for the long text and the seemingly overthinking of such a subject, however since I'm accustomed to reading research-level papers even if I'm no botanist, I wanted something else as answer instead of "old people always did this etc.".