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My new betula pendula sapling snapped in the storm: will it survive?

Discussion in 'Trees' started by sniffyjenkins, Jun 8, 2021.

  1. sniffyjenkins

    sniffyjenkins Apprentice Gardener

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    Hello all :smile:

    I bought a gorgeous 5 metre betula pendula sapling and planted it in March (we're in Brighton). Its girth was/is about 10-12cm. It was doing really well. BUT. Coming back from my honeymoon a couple of weeks ago we found it had snapped like a twig in the massive storms, just above where it was being held by the strap and stakes. So sad! We cut it off just below the break and now have approximately 1 metre still standing, which is still weeping copiously. My question is: is likely to survive or has too much of it gone? If it's obviously a gonner I'll take it out. And then cry a bit. And then find another one.

    Look forward to hearing your thoughts. Thanks!
     
  2. NigelJ

    NigelJ Total Gardener

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    @sniffyjenkins That's a shame. It must have been quite a storm. Unfortunately if it does survive it's unlikely to recover its original form. I think I would take it out and replace it, I would consider it's location when replanting; is it in a wind tunnel or is there a more sheltered place you could plant it?
    I would also talk to the supplier about what happened to the original tree and seek their advice about staking the new tree.
     
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    • pete

      pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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      A picture would be good.
      Are you saying a 10-12cm stem has snapped?
       
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      • sniffyjenkins

        sniffyjenkins Apprentice Gardener

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        Thanks. It was a force 8 gusting 10 gale (I'm a sailor so speak in beaufort scale!) over 2 days, so yes pretty big, and it does seem our little garden is a bit of a wind tunnel. We'll think about relocating it. I'm not worried about it returning to its original form, I'd just like it to not be dead. Your suggestion about staking advice from the supplier is a good one, I'll do that, though we bought their staking kit and followed the instructions to the letter. Guess it's not enough for wind tunnels though!
         
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        • sniffyjenkins

          sniffyjenkins Apprentice Gardener

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          No, the girth of the tree trunk is about 10/12cm and that's what's snapped.

          Here's a sad, sad photo. There's a bunch of work going on around it, so the surroundings are particularly beautiful at the moment...silver_birch.JPG
           
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          • pete

            pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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            I think that there is a lesson for any one who buys a large tree.
            Not sure how else you could have staked it but top three quarters can bend but the bottom quarter can't.

            So much for the modern short stake approach.
             
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            • NigelJ

              NigelJ Total Gardener

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              @sniffyjenkins you are right a very sad picture.
              If you decide to replace it with another Betula pendula then I'd go with a smaller sapling and although it will take a few years to grow; it will have the advantage of adapting to the conditions as it matures.
               
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              • JWK

                JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                I would go back to the supplier and tell them just that plus send your photo, the onus is on them to supply a replacement and a more suitable staking method.
                 
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