The Q&A Archives: Pruning Young's Weeping Birch

Question: I have a Young's weeping birch that needs pruning. It is growing very wide as the branches continue to grow and weep over. It is maintaining a height of about 10 feet. its height is no problem, but I would like to reduce and control its width. I don't know how to do this without destroying its shape. I would be pleased for some advice or a direction to some reference materials.

Answer: Birch are so difficult to prune well for shape and so prone to insect problems provided entry by the cuts that it is generally suggested not to prune them if at all possible. To be honest I don't know of a book that could show you how to begin to try to prune it for shape. In the long run this tree will continue to grow and it will likely be very obvious that it has been narrowed. You might wish to hire a professional arborist (not just a tree trimmer) to consult with and help you determine if it can even be done. Good luck with your tree!

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