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Damaged young crab apple

Hi all, back again begging for advice! For various reasons I have a few young trees and shrubs that have been in pots since I moved almost 4yrs ago. I'm now finally getting round to planting them but one crab apple has had quite a lot of branches damaged by falling over in gales (despite having some support) and heavy fruiting. I know I am totally to blame for not planting it but am now wondering if "new" branches will grow from the trunk to even out it's scrappy appearance or if new growth only comes from the branches that are left. It's about 6 foot tall and is generally very healthy. I have pruned damage as it occurred. This may be a really stupid question but I can't find the answer anywhere! Apologies again for being a numpty!


  • Difficult to advise without seeing it.  Any chance you could upload some photos?  A couple  of the whole thing from different angles and close-ups of where the damaged branches once joined the trunk would be great.
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • treehugger80treehugger80 Posts: 1,923
    you can cut it back clean to the trunk and it'll regrow, wont look pretty for a few years and you'll need to thin out the new branches that grow so it looks 'normal' and not like a tuft on a stick.

    but if you can get us pictures we could advise something less drastic.
  • Zen DogZen Dog Posts: 51

    Not great pics I'm afraid but hopefully give some idea what's going on, thanks
  • treehugger80treehugger80 Posts: 1,923
    id take the top down to where the crabs are then reduce all the other long branches by half, cut back to a bud and it'll be the new growing point next year (you will loose some flowers/crabs next year), in spring its shoot all over the place and the year after it'll look fine
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,622
    Yes, I'd do the same.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 8,190
    Ditto 😊
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • Zen DogZen Dog Posts: 51
    Thank you all. Particularly helpful when there's a concensus of opinion! 
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