Ask a Question forum→Plum tree care advice

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Coquitlam, British Columbia, C
littlebunny
Jun 4, 2018 9:51 PM CST
Hello

We have a large plum tree that has some low hanging lower branches. I'd like to chop them so that they're out of our walking path but I'm worried about damaging the tree. Is it ok to go ahead and if so, where along the branch should I cut...close to the trunk or a bit further out? Any other advice about how to look after it would be much appreciated. We just moved into a house and this is our first garden so have a lot to learn!

Thanks
LB
Thumb of 2018-06-05/littlebunny/b0ac54
Thumb of 2018-06-05/littlebunny/e4a6c1

Name: Celia
West Valley City, Utah (Zone 7a)
Irises Garden Photography I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Butterflies Birds
Cat Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Hummingbirder Plant Identifier
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Zencat
Jun 5, 2018 7:42 AM CST
I prune tree branches right near the trunk about 1/2" to 1" away. Also, can we have a look at the whole tree? The 1st picture is not a plum tree.
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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DaisyI
Jun 5, 2018 1:28 PM CST
Welcome!

The plum tree should be pruned every year - you can find help on proper pruning online or at the local nursery.

You can cut branches out anytime of year. But, plum trees are not large trees so cutting lower branches may lead to less fruit and the need for a ladder to pick it. When you look at the point the branch is attached to the trunk, there is what looks like a little collar. Cut to the branch side of the collar.

No, the first tree is not a plum tree. Smiling
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
Coquitlam, British Columbia, C
littlebunny
Jun 5, 2018 6:24 PM CST
Err..just checked and yeah they're two separate trees lol! Confused It's the big one that I want to cut back. Any idea what that is and can I cut in back to the trunk too?
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Jun 5, 2018 7:36 PM CST
Your first photo might be a Douglas Fir. Without closer photos, it will be hard to identify. The second photo does look like a plum or nectarine. So you are asking about the tree in photo #1? Yes, cut the bottom limbs as high as you like. If there is a little limb collar, cut on the branch side. Otherwise, cut as close to the trunk as you can without damaging the trunk. Zencat's suggestion of 1/2 an inch is a good one.
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
Coquitlam, British Columbia, C
littlebunny
Jun 6, 2018 11:12 PM CST
Yes I meant the 1st one, thanks for the advice. Here is a better photo of the whole tree.

Thumb of 2018-06-07/littlebunny/bf05ae

Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Jun 7, 2018 10:43 AM CST
How about a closeup photo of the needles?
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
Name: Celia
West Valley City, Utah (Zone 7a)
Irises Garden Photography I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Butterflies Birds
Cat Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Hummingbirder Plant Identifier
Image
Zencat
Jun 7, 2018 12:07 PM CST
Almost looks like a cedar of some kind. Maybe? Closeups please.
Coquitlam, British Columbia, C
littlebunny
Jun 9, 2018 10:17 PM CST
Here you go...
Thumb of 2018-06-10/littlebunny/f8852f

Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Jun 9, 2018 11:33 PM CST
It may be a Douglas fir - Pseudotsuga menziesii
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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