UKTC Archive

Re: Formative Pruning or Vandalism ?

Subject: Re: Formative Pruning or Vandalism ?
From: Andersonarb
Date: Jul 10 2001 18:52:42
In a message dated 10/07/01 18:19:45 GMT Daylight Time, 

So in the spirit of change, does this forum believe that formative pruning 
aesthetic reasons, should now be laid to rest, or just confined to manicured
gardens ?      Of course it is just possible that everyone else has already 
moved on and I'm
still in the dark ages in which case please enjoy a chuckle on me.

Just a thought but when I first became involved with this industry, 
'formative prune' was really a nursery term, something you'd do to prevent 
development of 'close crotches' and 'included bark,' Occasionally you'd hear 
someone say a tree wanted 'stopping' that is the leader cut back to encourage 
branching, if a tree was deemed to be getting too tall for its girth (bit 
subjective that one). 

By and large I don't think we should have a problem with this sort of 
formative pruning on young trees in street situations. Arguably if the tree 
is maturing and it needs formative pruning, you've left it too late, you're 
gonna make future problems for yourself and you might as well fell and grind 
and start again.

While we're going down this line of thought I'll stick my neck out and say 
that a lot of climbers, skilled as they undoubtedley are, haven't had much 
experience of new and recently planted trees and as an industry we might do 
well to ensure that this situation doesn't persist. (If for no other reason 
than a month in the nursery or tree planting gives your hands and arms a 
chance to recover from HAVS!)

Bill Anderson.

NB. I'm not advocating formative pruning for amenity woodland trees, but 
practically, would someone planting a whip in woodland deliberately plant one 
that he thought a poor specimen?

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