young oak tree pruning

Asked June 26, 2020, 12:56 PM EDT

I was just reading about pruning trees. I have a young oak tree that is growing at a tilt. I have other larger trees around it so maybe it is competing for sun? Just wondering if the tilt is okay or should I prune it so that there are more branches/leaves on one side. If so, any suggestions? The tree also doesn't seem to have a dominant leader anymore. You can see from the photos that the tree bifurcates and then the branch that is the higher one from the bifurcation branch sort of ends with three smaller branches growing laterally and up.

Baltimore Maryland

1 Response

If possible, you could straighten the tree by attaching a fat rope a foot or two above the beginning of the tilt, pulling it straight and attaching it somewhere to hold it in place. Don't keep the rope on for more than a year. Do not use a narrow rope or wire that may cut the tree. If that's all you have, slip it through a short piece of hose, using that as a cushion to protect the bark.

If you see no strong leader, you can remove the least upright ones or the least vigorous ones. But the tree looks pretty tall. At some point, you have to let it figure it out.

One option is to have an arborist look at it and do the work. Usually no charge for the consultation. Find a certified arborist, one certified by the International Society of Arboriculture, near you at: