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Author Topic: Co-dominant trunks  (Read 639 times)

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Offline JKamp

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Co-dominant trunks
« on: May 19, 2021, 05:58:22 PM »
Hey there guys, 
I have done some reading to try and figure out what to do with this tree while it is still on the younger side. We just moved in and we have a willow oak with 3 stems growing. I want to make correcting cuts before it gets huge and problematic! The smallest stem is an easy removal but what should I do with the other two? 

I have read under 4Ē diameter is ok to remove and that I should not remove more than 25% of the canopy in 1 year. I am thinking I need to top one stem this year and remove it next. Is this an OK plan and what stem should be removed? OR should both main stems be left? I imagine it would be decades before it becomes a real issue.

Thank you!




Online WDH

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Re: Co-dominant trunks
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2021, 08:36:33 PM »
I would keep the largest diameter one. 
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Offline Walnut Beast

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Re: Co-dominant trunks
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2021, 08:56:20 PM »


 Black Walnut.  How would you cut the lower part if you dug it out 😂

Offline Clark

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Re: Co-dominant trunks
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2021, 07:35:03 AM »
Iím with WDH on this one. Leave the biggest trunk and donít think twice about it. 

You can take up to 1/3rd of the crown when you prune. I donít know anything about water oak but if it is faster growing then be aggressive with pruning. Around here elm can be pruned to a Q-tip shaped crown and they come roaring back the next year. 

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Offline JKamp

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Re: Co-dominant trunks
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2021, 09:14:38 AM »
Thank you for the input. Willow oak are extremely fast growing and you can actually see one in the background that is about 30 years old. I would think the other stem would survive but I donít want to kill it off by accident. 

So based on this, you think I am OK to just cut it off in one go or top and remove it at the ground next year as not to stress the tree? 

Offline luap

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Re: Co-dominant trunks
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2021, 01:34:28 PM »
I have tried to do some  timber stand improvement in my sugar bush( predominantly maple)  of multiple stem trees with one trunk. The only success was if the stem was really small, under3" diameter .I tried cutting off at different heights leaving the face at a steep angle, to shed water.  But in every instance, given enough time (years)  the decomposition would travel down the stump killing the whole tree. In your situation I would remove them all and hire a stump grinder or excavator and replant what you want. The years go by quickly.

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