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Bedfordshire, United Kingdom


In summer a tree surgeon came to prune and remove some height from my Smoke Bush. A couple of weeks ago I noticed that the growth coming from two of the main branches coming from the trunk was going crinkled and some of it was completely yellow. A person I know and who is very knowledgeable about trees as he used to do tree surgery, suggested that where the surgeon had cut the branches to remove height he had cut them completely flat ie 180 degrees, which had allowed the rain to sit on top, soak in a rot the branches.

Is this likely? I contacted the tree surgeon and he said such a cut is technically correct and is unlikely to have caused the problem. He also said it is not possible to to slanted cuts on the Smoke Tree to remove height as the buds are virtually opposite ech other, which would mean chopping some of them off.

Please advise,

Waiting in anticipation,




If the branches weren't huge, as in tree limb sized, but just pencil thin, then that's unlikely to be the cause of the problem. Posting a photograph of the shrub showing the problem might be helpful, you can add it to this question or post another one. The optimum time for pruning Cotinus is mid to late spring rather than summer.

23 Sep, 2012

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