When to trim baby Sycamore tree

Carol P
by Carol P
I had a Sycamore tree planted maybe 10 years ago and it never amounted to much of a tree. Finally had it cut down. Then a shoot started up from the stump and looked really healthy. This was about 1 1/2 years ago and now it is over my head. I have cut two lower branches off last spring and sprayed with some black tree sealer.
2 questions: Do I wait till next early spring to cut two more limbs? They are pretty low or is that too many? Also showing you where I cut a limb off and it looks like it is splitting or gnarly, Any advice?
  3 answers
  • Hi Carol! Sycamores are very fast growing trees that require a lot of water. I see that it is not near any buildings or your house which is good. But I would like to caution you on letting it grow - many trees are not as strong when they grow from the stump as shoots when they reach heights of 30 feet or more and this could make it an unsafe tree if you are in a windy area. These trees grow huge and I would not recommend letting it grow unless it is far away from anything that it could tumble on when it reaches mammoth heights. Instead, I would find another tree and plant it near this one and start over. Then I would drill holes in the stump and kill it. I love trees and plants but sometimes you have to be wise about what you let grow.
  • Carol P Carol P on Aug 13, 2014
    This tree is out in the middle of a circle drive kind of close to a huge Bradford Pear that has had its share of broken limbs over the years. It is probably 30 yrs old. I was told by the tree trimmer to let the Sycamore grow because it must have a good root system and it will be stronger than the original tree. It sure looks 100% better than the one he cut down. I am on a hill that is very hard to plant anything due to a lot of rock. Apparently this tree found some space to spread its roots. So since I am going to keep it, do you have the answers about pruning? The attached picture isn't the best, but if you look just past the center rock circle you can see the start of this Sycamore tree and the size of the Bradford Pear. As you can see there is another Sycamore to the left. I think I am standing on the front porch looking SW. I think this was taken last year maybe late summer early fall. The bigger Sycamore looks a lot better this year. Probably all the rain we have had. It is probably 25-30 yrs old.@The Garden Frog with C Renee
    • @Carol P II would actually just leave it for now and wait a couple years to see what its growth pattern will be unless there are branches that are growing in towards the tree or touching other branches, does this make sense? you want to trim off any branches that are not growing outwards. Otherwise you just leave it be. As for the Bradford pear they are not a long lived tree and one day soon you will find it dead or toppled over. I would not ever replace it with another one. They can have so many pest and disease problems. I hope this helps.
  • Carol P Carol P on Aug 13, 2014
    Thanks for your help...so no trimming the lower branches. Should I spray more of that black sealer on the trunk. It is kind of opening up and thought maybe it would give it more protection. Sorry for so many questions. @The Garden Frog with C Renee
    • @Carol P I personally do not use sealer on trees. I let nature take its course. The trunk is rotting and if this tree is going to survive it probably will be best for it to rot away. I have found when you seal a tree with that sealer, you can actually seal in borers, bugs, and other pests that can be harmful to the tree. No problem for the questions! anytime.