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Update - Multi Stemmed Betula Experiment


After all your great advice, comments and Dotty’s blog showing her multi stemmed betula created by using three trees planted together to create one tree I decided to abandon my experiment and plant the young trees elsewhere in the garden and re-think.

I have Bluebell Nursery 3 miles from here, they are tree experts so I popped over for a chat as they had them in stock online.

Giant Redwood on entrancing the car park.

I was met by Jason who was lovely and talked me through the process they use to create a multi stemmed tree. They don’t hard prune a young tree to a couple of buds above ground level, he said if you did 10 trees you’d probably get only one viable.

They take the top out of the small trees, to stop the sap rising so it concentrates on the developing the side shoots below. Jason said not to touch the side shoots but to let them develop into stems, he said to send a photo if future pruning advice needed.

Here’s my tiny tree.

Jason says he remembers this one in their Arboretum being planted and it looked just like the one I’ve bought.
Looks like I need to be patient.

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Good luck Dawn, I hope it grows into a nice tree for you just as you want it.
It's good that the people in the nursery are so helpful too, you are bound to succeed :)

10 Jan, 2020


Thanks Hywel, I find it best to learn from people with experience, invaluable. I think it will be a success:-) It was good to see before purchase too as online you’re not always sure what youll get.

10 Jan, 2020


Lucky to have a specialist nursery close to you. Nothing better than being able to chat to nursery people who grow the plants for which you need advice.
I have a nursery specialising in carniverous plants near me.

10 Jan, 2020


well that is interesting and makes sense.

good luck with your little one.

10 Jan, 2020


Always best to get some advice from the experts, Dawn! I hope you tree does indeed succeed & you get to see multi stems develop. :)

10 Jan, 2020


Siris, I see why you have your carniverous plants now.
Seaburn, yes they're good there.
Thanks Balcony

10 Jan, 2020


Its great to have professional advice so close at hand. It sounds as though you're on the right track now. Will you be taking a series of photographs to record its development?

10 Jan, 2020


I could do Stera. Good idea

11 Jan, 2020


Isn't that great. You can always count on Jason for great and generous advice. :) So, it's a matter of removing the leader then Dawn....but when, and by how much? I might do that with the Acer griseum.

14 Jan, 2020


He’s ever so nice and knowledgeable as you know Karen.
So yes, as simple as that, basically taking the lead out to make it concentrate on putting growth into the side shoots, a method they’ve found to be the most effective. I didn’t establish how old the tree was when the top was taken out, I guess quite young, it’s about three feet tall and the side shoots are around a foot. I mentioned pruning my Acer griseum to Jason as it has a crossing branch and he said right now is a good time so for yours sooner rather than later.

15 Jan, 2020


Thanks Dawn! X

15 Jan, 2020


I am so glad you managed to sort this out Dawn. nothing beats hands on experience does it? You must keep us posted .......

19 Jan, 2020


You’re right and at Bluebell they know theyre stuff, a family business - I quote:
a notable family team. Robert Vernon trained way back at Hilliers Nursery in Hampshire, where he met his wife, Suzette. They did three years of specialised study etc.

I’ve planted in the ground so watch this space :-)

19 Jan, 2020


I will do.......👌

20 Jan, 2020

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