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Two Stems/Trunks

Posted by The.Librarian (My Page) on
Sat, Mar 15, 14 at 12:20

Good day, I just pulled my Trees from their "winterized" zone about a week or two ago. I noticed a growth coming from near the bottom, but figured it was just another branch.
Evidently it is now taking on a life of it's own and the base of this growth is starting to darken (like the bark from the original stem).
Should I remove the second stem, or should I leave it?
Edit: This is a Coast Redwood

This post was edited by The.Librarian on Sat, Mar 15, 14 at 12:23

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Two Stems/Trunks


i dont see any evidence.. but to be sure.. this is a seedling ... yes???

so no issue of grafting understock...

what would i do ... whether its right or wrong.. lol ...

i would work under the presumption that every leaf is a food making machine.. and i would want as many as possible for at least this growing season ... of course.. based on this pic.. i have no clue how big this thing actually is ....

at this size.. there really isnt any hurry to prune it into future shape ... you have a decade or so for that ... so i would be in too much of a hurry .....

but i would rub off all the other buds down there.. before you end up with a shrub ...

lets try not to love it too death .... so i would default to simply proper watering .. near drying.. and little or no fert.. depending how long its been in that media ...

and dont forget.. you can always top off that part.. to leave some leaves.. but discourage its height ... until time comes to cut it all the way back ...

try to picture this thing.. when the trunk is a foot thick .. and that should give you an idea of jsut how much time you have.. to get rid of this ....

good luck


ps: i think.. on some level.. with such a young tree.. i might be leery of open cut wounds.. that low on the trunk ... making that another reason to wait until that trunk thickens up and matures a bit ...

pps: wasnt there some librarian.. indiana jones type movie.. i am going to have to google that when i have some free time ....

Here is a link that might be useful: i was advised i had time now...

RE: Two Stems/Trunks

If it were my seedling, I probably would remove it. It is true that the foliage on the sprout will give energy to the overall plant, however it will also redirect resource away from the main leader. If you had two identical plants and removed the sprout from only one, the one where you had removed the competing leader would likely have it's main leader grow more than the unpruned control specimen. This is somewhat comparable to the situation where a grafted plant suckers from below the graft. In the case of the grafted plant, sometimes the redirect of energy is so great that the scion (original leader) is lost. I'm not saying that your primary leader would necessarily every be overtaken by the aggressive sprout, but there is a cost to the main leader of leaving the sprout on. Removing it now would cause only a tiny wound that would cover over in a blink of an eye.

There is a third option (besides leaving it as-is and removing it). Personally, I think sniping it and forgetting it is easier, but you could work with the sprout to slow its growth. One thing that would do this is a heading cut just above the second branchlet. After that, the sprout would probably behave more like a limb than a competing leader. A second way to slow it down would be to tie it down to a more horizontal direction. This is commonly done with fruit trees to slow the growth of a branch.

RE: Two Stems/Trunks

Just snip it off already. I lost a tiny but beautiful variegated oak by not snipping off from under the graft soon enough. It was overcome by the vigorous rootstock before I even noticed. I am assuming yours is grown on its own roots, but sooner or later it's going to have to come off, and as said coming into spring growth, the 'extra' food machine on this little rascal is redundant.

RE: Two Stems/Trunks

You could also let it grow a bit and then cut it off and try to root it as a cutting. Coast Redwoods root fairly easy.
As said above, eventually you should remove it. Even after you remove it you will get more sprouts. Rub them off as soon as you see them so more don't appear.....unless you want more cutting material. ;-)

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