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No leaves on middle 1/2 of purple leaf birch

I planted a purple leaf birch tree about 2 years ago (planted during the winter, bare root) and there has never been any leaves on the middle section of the tree. There are a few thin branches coming from the main stem but they look dead and there are no buds on them. This has been the same each year since it was planted. There are leaves on the lower branches and lots on the top.

Do I cut off the branches and hope new growth forms from the stem? And what could have caused this?

Hope the pictures are ok.

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Posts

  • elaychelaych Posts: 10

    Bumping this up the list image

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,397

    Good idea elaych

    But I haven't go a clue how that happened or what to do about it. it's quite leaning over in one of the pics as well. I should think it's between cutting off all the bottom stuff and waiting for the top to fill out and cutting it right back to grow as a bush (above the graft if it's grafted) It's not likely to fill out in the middle, that's not what trees do. 

  • elaychelaych Posts: 10

    Thanks nutcutlet. It's good to wait for another opinion before I start cutting off branches here and there! I will try cutting off the bottom branches and wait for the top to fill out as I would really like to add height to the garden rather than cutting it back to grow as a bush.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,397

    By the time it gets to be a big tree you'd be removing those bottom branches anyway

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