PeeGee Hydrangea

tree hard to straighten

Zone Coast of Maine Zone 5a/b | Nonnycakes added on July 26, 2014 | Answered

I planted a Hydrangea grandiflora (Pee Gee) tree at the end of the summer of 2011 that had a slight bow in the stem. Summer of 2012, a micro-burst ripped through my backyard and ravished the poor tree. It was leaning heavily in one direction due to the weight of the heavy wet blooms and the bow was more pronounced. I pruned it back severely in order to lighten its load and set up a 3-way guying system to try to straighten and support the tree. (The ground where it is planted also slopes down a bit in the direction the tree is leaning.) I left the structure on until this summer (2014). I removed the supports (thinking that the tree was in good shape), but after doing so, it was still leaning back considerably. While I pondered what to do next, a few days later, another micro-burst came through our yard and now the tree is leaning over more than ever. When I first took the supports off, I noticed that when I pulled the tree back towards an upright position the ground heaved upwards on the other side, not wanting to allow the tree to straighten. Is there a way to actually get the tree to grow upright at this point? It seems as if I would have to break the roots that are not allowing it to grow properly in order to be able just to guy it again, but I don't know if this is something that could be done without hurting the tree. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. This is my favorite tree and I would so love to save it.

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Answered on July 26, 2014

Why don't you try to work extra soil under the area that heaved up when you pulled it backwards. Then do some more support for another season. Or you can dig up the tree and move it to a more protected area. This article has more on helping trees stand up straight:

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