limelight tree form

arbordayle(6 PA)April 7, 2011

I purchased a tiny limelight from Bluestone two summers ago and placed it in a pot. Last summer I noticed one strong upright stem and decided to experiment and try to train the hydrangea into a tree form. I cut all the branches off except for the main stem and staked it. During the winter I moved the pot into my garage where it's now starting to leaf out. The main stem is about four feet tall and standing straight. However,I noticed that at the bottom of the shrub, leaves are sprouting from the spots where I cut off the lower branches. Should I just keep cutting off those leaves or should I raise the dirt level in the pot (about six inches) in order to cover the bottom of the stem and perhaps prevent new branches from growing?

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arbordayle(6 PA)

Maybe I can explain it better. It was a multistem shrub. I cut off all the stems at the base of the plant except for the one that was growing straight up. The stems that were cut off at the base are now starting to regrow. Should I raise the dirt level in the container to cover them or just keep removing the foliage as it appears?

    Bookmark   April 7, 2011 at 10:41PM
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Did you find your answers yet? I would say go ahead and trim off those lower branches. From what I've read, it takes a few years to train into a tree form, hence the price of the tree form 'Limelight' at the nurseries. Hope you're taking pictures, I'd love to see the progress from year to year.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2011 at 9:27AM
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If you want to train this shrub to be a tree cut all the branches to the ground. When it starts to grow train one stem up a stick and remove all the others. All the growth will go into that one stem to form a tree. Once it get to the height you want stop training it, trim the leader and let it branch at the top of the trunk. You can remove the stick after a few years once the stem is nice and thick and can support the top.

Here is a link that might be useful: The Plant Hunter

    Bookmark   April 13, 2011 at 5:59PM
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