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Mar 29, 2018 8:08 AM CST
Name: Anna Z.
Monroe, WI
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Cat Lover Raises cows Region: Wisconsin
My friend Tracey has a walnut tree that had an "accident" last year, and she asked me this question yesterday. I told her I knew NOTHING about trees, and I'd ask here. If anyone has suggestions, I'll pass them on to her. Thanks.


An approximate 5 year old (10' tall) walnut tree snapped off below all the branches during a wind storm last fall. It was still held together by bark and some of the meat of the tree so we put 2x4s up around it and stood it back up. The top half of the tree appeared to die off but the bottom half (about 5' from ground) sprouted new growth at the point of the break. If the top half doesn't come back and is removed this spring, will the bottom half of the tree continue to grow taller or will the growth just remain at the short level and new limbs grow from there OR should we just cut it down and remove the whole thing?
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Mar 29, 2018 9:40 AM CST
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Tree trunks don't grow taller. The height at the point where the limbs grew will be the height forever so if a new limb sprouted at the 5 ft level, it will always be at the 5 ft level. If your friend chooses to keep the walnut, choose three evenly spaced and appropriately angled branches to become the new scaffolding branches for the tree. The chosen branches should be growing up, not sideways or down.

In commercial walnut orchards, the trees always branch just a couple feet above the ground but I have never hit my head on a walnut tree. A tree with a 4 or 5 foot trunk should be fine. The branches will grow tall and continue to branch higher. If your friend wants a tree she can walk under, this tree will be walk-underable.

Another advantage of keeping this tree is that the roots are established so new growth will be faster as the canopy catches up with the roots.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org
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Mar 29, 2018 9:44 AM CST
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
Remove broken branch. Make clean cut where it broke. Paint over cut.
With some shaping/pruning, it will grow back.👍👍
😎😎😎
Anything i say, could be misrepresented, or wrong.
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Mar 29, 2018 9:50 AM CST
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
I also suggest you Google tree pruning. So you prune the scaffold branches correctly. Spacing, angles, etc. 👍
😎😎😎
Anything i say, could be misrepresented, or wrong.
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Mar 29, 2018 1:17 PM CST
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Don't paint over cut. That has proven to harbor moisture and cause rot problems.

Walnuts are only pruned to take out dead/broken branches and crossing branches.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

President: Orchid Society of Northern Nevada
Webmaster: osnnv.org
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Mar 29, 2018 1:48 PM CST
Name: Dr. Demento Jr.
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
What kind of walnut tree?
There are products for treating tree/bush wounds that work but never paint them, does not help.
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Mar 29, 2018 1:51 PM CST
Name: Anna Z.
Monroe, WI
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Cat Lover Raises cows Region: Wisconsin
She said she was going to just cut the top part off and leave it and see what happens.

Thanks for the input.
Avatar for Coppice
Mar 29, 2018 6:56 PM CST
Name: Tom Cagle
SE-OH (Zone 6a)
Old, fat, and gardening in OH
Your walnut will make a new top.
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