Return to the Maples Forum | Post a Follow-Up

'Orange Dream' Japanese Maple, thinning, symmetry?

Posted by OnlineHarvest Ontario, 5 (My Page) on
Sun, Jun 5, 11 at 11:17

Hello, a couple questions.
I have 2 'Orange Dream' Japanese Maples in my front entrance (please see picture). Because of the design of my house, I am trying to achieve symmetry on either side (please excuse the obvious necessary prunning of the boxwood and lower limbs of the maple).

1. What is the best method to achieve this symmetry? FYI, the maple on the LEFT seems to be growing faster and appears healthier than the maple on the RIGHT (RIGHT maple also has thinning, see below). Trim LEFT until RIGHT catches up?

The Orange Dream, from what I've seen in mine and other pictures, is more shrub like and dense in foliage, and I'd like to maintain that (as opposed to the airy look of say, a bloodgood).

2. How should I address the thinning with the maple on the RIGHT (see photo). It's a good size section and if I were to cut it all back, it would look kind of odd (thinning is visible from either side of tree, as well as behind). Is there a potential disease at the root affecting this whole section? Can I add fertilizer? etc

Also, since it's June, is it a bad time to prune this tree? Im sure the small dead wood is fine, but I'd like to remove the low lying branches that are too low and interferring with the boxwood.

Thanks for your help

Uploaded with

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: 'Orange Dream' Japanese Maple, thinning, symmetry?

If you want perfect symmetry, then Japanese maples may not be the best choice. Personally, I would not prune back the left to match the right -- pruning to control height is not an ideal or even recommended reason for pruning and pruning generally encourages additional growth, so whatever equality in appearance you may achieve could be very short-lived.

The dieback on the right hand tree is of concern. Yes, you do want to remove the dead branching (sterlize pruners betwen cuts) and I'd take them to a qualified nursery or extension office for diagnosis. It is quite possible there is a pathogenic origin. If just winter damage, the tree should fill in the empty area eventually.

June/summer IS a good time to prune JM's, so reducing/removing lower branches should be fine. Again, I'd want to make sure I sterilized my pruners in between cuts so that if pathogens are present, you won't spread the infection.

RE: 'Orange Dream' Japanese Maple, thinning, symmetry?

No, perfect symmetry is not expected, but I would like them to be the same height. Does that mean I should prune the tops of the RIGHT maple to encourage upward growth?

I will cut as you suggested and bring to a local nursery.

RE: 'Orange Dream' Japanese Maple, thinning, symmetry?

  • Posted by whaas 5a SE WI (My Page) on
    Tue, Jun 7, 11 at 13:45

Just my opinion but I think they look good and I'm jealous of your two JMs. I'd only prune the deadwood.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Maples Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here