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Pruning Acer - warm winter?

We've been having a very mild winter here in Scotland and I'm concerned it hasn't been / won't be very cold this year and might be damaging to prune an acer now / this winter. Does anyone have thoughts on this? Thanks!


  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,991
    It's probably only a matter of time before real winter blows in so I'd be inclined to hang fire for a while. 
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • But will the increased light levels mean the sap starts rising / lose dormancy, which will make the acer bleed? It is a strange lack of winter dormancy I see this year and not sure a couple cold weeks will make a difference...
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 11,137
    I pruned a big acer about 3 weeks ago (only small branches overhanging a public footpath) and it's only just stopped bleeding!
    Never known it happen before when pruning in Dec/Jan, but I guess winter hasn't arrived yet. Only 1 frost so far this winter and down here in the balmy south east its 12c today. No rain for weeks either, and I mowed the lawn this morning :)

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • treehugger80treehugger80 Posts: 1,923
    Acers are affected by temperature rather than day length, so if it still warm i'd wait until after we've had a good cold snap to put it fully to sleep
  • Yes I checked with my Acer guru & he says you need at least 2 weeks of continuous cold to make them fully dormant. Not sure where in the country you are but here in the suburbs we have had daytime temps of +11 and even night time temps of 7-8. We have had colder days & nights but only one or two at a time. Apparently there is an Arctic blast on it's way tomorrow, but how long for we will have to see.
    AB Still learning

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