Last year i decided to try to train a chaenomeles against a fence. It didn't really appreciate it and some branches died back. However, three main stems survived (along with lots of small new ones) and one was looking particularly pretty. Today as I was taking my secateurs back to the shed, I spotted it and thought I'd just quickly get rid of the dead stems and re-tie the others to tidy it up. I cut a thick stem right to the ground, stood back, and I'd only bloomin' well cut off the best stem of all .
It's all lopsided now. Act in haste, repent at leisure.