Prune/move Salix purpurea 'Nana' now?

tangerine_z6(6)September 9, 2009

My one year old dwarf blue arctic willow 'Nana' has outgrown its space in my small front yard and will need to be moved. Can it be pruned hard and moved now or should I wait until next spring? It is a wonderful swaying shrub, just in the wrong space. I live in zone 6.

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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

I had the SAME problem! I don't know why the hell they advertise these at 4' X 4'. Apparently they get more like 6' X 6'...even bigger. I guess if you prune them back hard to the ground every year (which they don't mind) it may get 4' X 4'. But if you want that sway look its better off left alone and pruned back hard every few years.

I made the mistake of moving 4 of them a few weeks ago. There top growth was so top heavy, and it was extremely hard to balance the shrub because of its ridiculous root structure. It barely had a ball it just had random 1" curvy roots. Yes 1" roots on a 1.5 year old shrub.

Moral of the story? Wait until leave drop. Prune lightly.
You can then prune back hard the following year.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2009 at 9:21AM
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tangerine_z6(6)

Okay, thanks for sharing your experience with me whaas. Interesting about the small roots. The shrub is really much larger than I anticipated but also a lovely specimen. In my small front yard it overpowers every thing and looks ridiculous but it will be an asset in the back where it can sway freely.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2009 at 11:16AM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

You meant large roots right? A 1" caliper root on a 1.5 yr old planted #3 cnt. is out of control! lol

    Bookmark   September 10, 2009 at 1:20PM
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