The Q&A Archives: Pruning contorted fig or hazelnut tree

Question: I am looking for information on pruning needs of a contorted fig and hazelnut tree. Tree is about 4' tall, healthy. Is there something I should do to enhance the overall look or health? Is it desirable to thin the crown at all or just let it get as dense as it can?


Answer: It's only necessary to prune if the tree gets too large. The contortions of the tree can be lost when the tree is over-pruned, but thinning is acceptable if things get out of hand. Be careful not to remove more than 25-30 percent of the tree at one time; this can over-stress the tree. The contorted part of your tree is grafted onto a rootstock. Removing anything that grows below the graft will keep the rootstock from overgrowing and crowding out the contortions at the top of the graft. Enjoy your tree!

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