serpentine birch - Knowledgebase Question

hoffman estates, Il
Question by lagoers
April 20, 2010
we planted a Youngs serpentine birch last fall. What do I do with the branches that are laying on the ground? Some of them are 2 feet long. Do I trim them so they don't touch the ground. I want to make sure it grows in a nice shape. Thanks


Answer from NGA
April 20, 2010


I'd leave the branches alone for now. You can prune them in early fall or late winter. If you prune now, you'll invite Bronze Birch Borer insects to the wounds and the pruning cuts might bleed sap for quite a long time, which can compromise the health of your birch. Waiting until the weather cools in the fall or winter will not only keep sap oozing to a minimum, you'll also outsmart the borers (they're not as active in the cold weather).

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