Pussy Willow Trees
Q.

My weeping pussy willow died below the graft and has begun growing small branches straight up. How do I retrain my tree?

Zone U.K. | Ninawingate added on September 3, 2019 | Answered

The established willow tree started to die about half way down the trunk and turn brown, a large branch then began to grow from the side creating an R shape. My partner then decided to chop the dead half off... and now there are 9-12 large branches growing straight up in the air from the top of the R branch about 8 feet tall. Should I trim all the branches down and try focus on one main one to retrain the height? How do I refrain the shape back? Has it gone back into ‘bush form’?

A.
A.Answers to this queston: Add Answer
BushDoctor
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on September 4, 2019

If it has died below the graft, then it is no longer the same tree that you purchased, and will never go back to its shape. The bottom of the tree (Rootstock) is different from the top of the tree (scion) so you will have to accept the tree how it is, or remove it and start over with a fresh tree, unfortunately.

This article will help you to care for a new one in the future to prevent such an occurrence: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/shrubs/pussy-willow/growing-pussy-willows.htm

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Ninawingate
Answered on September 4, 2019

Just to add to this, I’m not bothered about the species all I’m wondering is will the tree ever ‘willow’ again with training, and that answer came across rather patronising. My dog ate the bark and thus it died... but thanks I guess.

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