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Sweet Bay Laurel Trees

Q.Can A Damaged Bay Tree Recover

Zone Nottingham, UK | Peter Graham added on July 20, 2021 | Answered

A question on a damaged bay tree. I have a standard bay tree about 1.5m tall of the “lollipop” style which has been damaged. The ball is formed from two main branches one of which snapped off. Tried to graft it back but as you can see from the photo it did not take and is now just held with tie wraps. What can I do to try and recreate the foliage in a ball? Cut it back to the stem or is it a lost cause? The problem is that one of the main branches has snapped very close to the trunk and I am left with a rather wonky bit. Grateful for any advice.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on July 20, 2021

Unfortunately, that is a large branch to try and graft. It was destined to fail. Luckily, there is a nice branch left. You can choose to keep that and reshape it as it ages, or you can cut the top off ans start again. Be aware that if you go this route, you can kill the tree if there aren't any replacement branches.

I would shape what is already there, but I would let it grow out instead of turning it into a standard shape. Trees have a way of making some interesting shapes from damage, though they may not look as intended.


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