In some cases, such as where some leaf cover is required, leave some branches intact or cut back to a side branch. , As with coppicing, only species with vigorous epicormic growth may be made into pollards. However, bear in mind the following: Once young trees or shrubs have reached the desired height, you can begin to pollard them. Before you make cuts, plan how they will fall, making sure they won't damage structures, vehicles, or outdoor items. Then, continue pruning your trees every 3-5 years as they mature. This way, your tree can direct all its nutrients to this topmost branch. These are a few of the plants it can be used on: Pollarding a tree is usually done annually, and would need to be carried out every few years to avoid potential problems. A pollard simply meant someone or something that had been polled (similar to the formation of "drunkard" and "sluggard"); for example, a hornless ox or polled livestock. To maintain a pollard these smaller branches should be cut back to the original pollard cuts. Although cuttings of hardwood trees such as black walnuts take longer to root than those of softwoods, the result is worth the wait. More thought and planning goes into pollarding, which is considered an art form, much like topiary. Pollarding is a pruning system involving the removal of the upper branches of a tree, which promotes the growth of a dense head of foliage and branches.  Older pollards often become hollow, so it can be difficult to determine age accurately. Stop the topping! She earned a BA in Environmental and Sustainability Studies from Western Michigan University in 2014. When you pollard a tree, you prune it to its main stem and perhaps a few shortened branches. The lower level of tree sap during this season means that less stress will be caused to the tree and it is also less likely that a tree will suffer infection from Insects or fungi during the Winter as both of these threats are dormant. But opting out of some of these cookies may affect your browsing experience. Some of the weakly-attached branches can break off and fall to the ground. London plane (, Branches should be pruned just above the previous pollarding cuts. By using our site, you agree to our. For harvesting nuts, you might start your scaffold branches as low as 4 ½ feet (1.5 m.). Wear safety goggles, hold the chainsaw away from your body, and handle the chainsaw with care to keep yourself protected. Consult an arborist, if you are in any doubt. There are a few reasons for choosing to pollard trees. Removing branches when the tree is young is much easier and more visually appealing than waiting until the tree matures. Log in, Attracting Black Swallowtail Butterfly Caterpillars, Partial Shade Container Garden; Indoor Tropicals and Exterior Annuals. It is usually best to carry out any pollarding during the Winter months when the deciduous trees have shed their leaves,and the tree structure is more noticeable. It has recovered spectacularly and I wish I had cut another 10 fett off. Be extremely careful when cutting branches from high above. ", https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9G3MZuB4U8, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sl1_jmx3DYc, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. While it is not hard to prune walnut trees, it can be difficult to access the top of the tree. You can easily pollard your own trees by following the steps below. I’m not sure what you mean by 1st and 2nd instances; for now I am assuming the 1/4 acre minimum and 3 acre maximum? The central leader position is based off the natural growth of the tree, focusing on a main leader branch that keeps the canopy of the tree open to light and air circulation. "Poll" was originally a name for the top of the head, and "to poll" was a verb meaning "to crop the hair". Take walnut cuttings any time of the year, but preferably in early spring or early winter when the parent tree is dormant and sustains little harm. Do this if you are comfortable with heights and experienced with using similar tools and equipment. But pollarded trees aren't for everyone, since they can be stark-looking when they do not have leaves. Sometimes, only some of the regrown stems may be cut in a season – this is thought to reduce the chances of death of the tree when recutting long-neglected pollards. Starting a walnut tree from a cutting is an economical means of plant propagation. When is the right time to prune? You need to be able to escape the falling branch. Pollards cut at about a metre above the ground are called stubs (or stubbs).