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Pruning an Eucalyptus Tree


By Patrick

Fife Scotland, United Kingdom Gb

My sister inlaw has recently moved house & has inherited a 15 to 20 foot Eucalyptus tree, last owner had tied tree to the boundery wooden fence, the branches are damaging the said fence, is it possible to prune back branches at this time of year with out damaging tree

On plant Eucalyptus



We had a similar sized (grey-leaved) eucalyptus tree in the garden when we inherited it. Nice, but totally in the way of development, so it had to go. Except that it wouldn't.After removing everything down to a stump of only a few inches above ground level, it kept sending up shoots. I kept hacking and the shoots kept coming. Eventually, I drilled holes in it and filled them with petrol and set fire to the damned thing (I wouldn't dream of unleashing such toxins into the air now, though). It has never regrown.Guess what? Am now needing a eucalyptus for next year! My real point is that I think they are rather strong specimens and can withstand a lot. Also, if it is evergreen, it can be pruned now. Any chance of a cutting or 2, lol?

30 Jan, 2008


Hi David, thanks for help, the wife thinks it's evergreen, i'm sure you can have as many as you like,will get back to you, it is a grey-green with oval leaf,I've just phone'd her she has two, both needing pruned, can i ask what does lol mean? I'm not up to computer jargon, thanks to everybody for their help

30 Jan, 2008


hi Patrick, check your inbox now.

30 Jan, 2008


lol = laughs out loud
For really funny stuff, there's pmsl = pisses myself laughing
and rofl = rolls on floor laughing

Eucalyptus, as David has noted, are stubborn things. There are also some (eg E.gunnii) that have different juvenile and mature foliage; needless to say, the juvenile foliage is more attractive. Their instinct to rejuvenate means you can be pretty drastic and they should sprout again.

A really hard winter might finish off a young specimen, and obviously settng fire to it has the same effect (and they do burn very well so beware!). I would recommend doing any major pruning work in early spring so it has an entire growing season to recover.

30 Jan, 2008


Oh, Andrew! Many thanx for your hasty reply to my SOS. Also, even more thanx 4 the lingo lesson, I did learn a new one there, pmsl!

30 Jan, 2008


Hi Andrew, thanks i'll try to remember them, (Dont think she'll be burning it) we dont know how old they are,Thanks for help much appreciated

30 Jan, 2008


Yes, just don't even burn the prunings. My fire was 15 feet away from my newly-erected polypropylene greenhouse, which was chosen on purpose as opposed to glass, to be childproof - but it wasn't Davidproof! I had to replace a few melted panes, at some expense (moneywise and timewise). There was certainly no rofl, then.

30 Jan, 2008


I'm sure it was a dear lesson, we all learn by our mistakes

30 Jan, 2008


Yes we do. thanx for reminding me of it and being able to pass it on, with Andrewr's expert help.

30 Jan, 2008


In their native Australia, Eucalyptus forests are often decimated by fires but are capable of recovering again within months. The young foliage is a lovely champagne colour encouraged to sprout by pretty good trimming. I trim mine about three times a year, but only between spring and autumn. I'm keeping it down to a seven foot bush. It makes for a lovely bit of screening.

Get control of the thing one way or other though, Patrick. These trees can grow to a hundred feet!

1 Feb, 2008


PRune them in spring not winter...

16 Jul, 2009


Thnak Goodness, Nicky, we did this at the right time of the year. Now, you have me wondering what happened with the ones we pruned hard. I should drive by, and see. :-)

17 Jul, 2009


Yes you can prune back a eucalyptus - having done so many times myself over here (right down to the ground)! They will grow to be enormous trees if you don't. Spring is definitely the best time to do it over there. Pmsl and rofl!!!!! That's a great story David - although eucalypts can survive the worst bushfires with the most intense flames!!!

17 Jul, 2009

How do I say thanks?

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