I have two large surface roots left behind when we lost a large gumbo limbo to Irma. Currently it is now pushing out numerous stalks clumped together at two locations on these roots . How should I prune this to force it to grow as a tree rather than a bush as it looks today? The stalks are two to three feet tall, some fairly thick and brown, others still green and pliable. It is growing very fast and I would like to see it develop int a couple or few major trunks rather than the bush that seems to be emerging.
Growing a Gumbo Limbo
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Just prune away anything that you do not want to grow. This will not harm anything. You will just have to be diligent for several years, as they will try to sprout again. Just keep cutting until the tree has reached a more pleasant shape again.
Here is an article for more information: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/trees/gumbo-limbo/gumbo-limbo-trees.htm