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Aberdeenshire, United Kingdom Gb

Some of the smaller branches of my oldest purple leaved Acer are now tall enough to be above the shelter of the 6ft fence and have been badly wind damaged and their leaves have shrivelled up. All the rest of the leaves lower down are perfectly fine. Should I leave well alone and hope for better next year or, could/should I prune these still living branches back now to improve the look of the tree and also perhaps avoid this happening again? Advice would be welcome.



I would not prune it back till mid winter. Acers have a lot of sap and the last thing you want to do is cause it to bleed. There is a chance that reserve leaves come out, either way I would wait.

As you know, Acers hate wind, adding a trellis to give it more shelter, or if space, a tree that tolerates wind like Tamarisk and the like.

19 May, 2012


Thanks, K. I was thinking that would be best, not to prune it till late in the year. Good to have that confirmed. Meanwhile I hope it can recover a bit of leaf on top, as it looks rather odd at the moment.

19 May, 2012


I lost half of an Acer garnet last year when I trimmed it due to dead branches. It bled sap (I did not see it) and it died down to the roots. The partner branch has stayed fine as it was not cut. I lost an Acer palmatum the year before due to excessive rain (shot drain pipes due to icicles and the whole roof drained onto the poor plant!). Prima donna plants but so lovely at the same time.

19 May, 2012

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