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pruning evergreen oaks

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Question from John Weston

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I have a Quercus Rysophylla ( Mexican evergreen oak) which was planted 3 years ago. It is growing well but has a thin trunk, now standing at about 10ft tall. It is well-staked but is being buffeted by autumn winds. I can find no information about pruning but feel that it needs to be reduced to prevent damage . Any suggestions about timing please?

pruning evergreen oaks

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  • Views: 1626
  • Replies: 3
  • Posted: Mon. 21st October 2013 13:01

Re: pruning evergreen oaks

Reply from Kathy C

HI, John,
Typically, oaks as a genus need very little pruning. You can remove dead, damaged, and misplaced shoots when the tree is dormant, removing no more than 1/3 of the crown. As far as your young tree, the first step is to remove the stake. Trees shouldn't be staked for more than a year after planting. The stake on your tree at an angle isn't providing much support any way. The action of wind actually helps to strengthen the trunks of young trees. You can reduce the crown a bit, but I would wait until it is truly dormant before doing so.
All the best,
Kathy C

  • Posted: Tue. 22nd October 2013 18:43

Re: pruning evergreen oaks

Reply from John Weston

Thanks for the information Kathy but my problem is working out when the dormant period is, as it is evergreen and there is plenty of new young growth at the moment.

  • Posted: Tue. 22nd October 2013 21:29

Re: Re: pruning evergreen oaks

Reply from Kathy C

Hi, John,
Like deciduous trees and shrubs, evergreens do have a dormant period when growth slows or stops for a season. And like deciduous, that time is winter. Best to prune in mid-winter.
Kathy C

  • Posted: Tue. 22nd October 2013 22:06