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I want to keep the tree kind of short. I want it to look like a mushroom on top, then in the summer just trim the bottom.

Is this possible?

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    Which variety of Willow is it? – Bamboo Nov 29 '15 at 14:05
  • This is possible with a lot of work. Willows don't normally grow in that shape so you will be out trimming three or four times a year in the growing season. A weeping mulberry or any weeping leafy tree is easier to shape the way you want – kevinsky Nov 29 '15 at 16:46
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The comment by kevinsky is right on. Willows are fast growers, and even in our cool climate (Alberta) will do 3-4 feet a year. You would be constantly pruning.

You may be able to find a top graft, where a willow such as Dwarf Arctic Blue (S. purpurea 'nana') is grafted to a tree form trunk. This would reduce seriously the amount of top pruning required. But since it has full sized roots, I'd expect a lot of suckering.

There are many top grafted trees that may suit you better.

Look for a top grafted tri-colour willow. The top 'ball' will be about 5 feet across. they are usually centered 5-6 feet off the ground.

  • When I planted Arctic willow on a heavily compacted berm you couldn't even see over it in three years. Hope a dwarf type stays dwarf. Top grafts tend to be bit dicey in colder climates. – kevinsky Nov 29 '15 at 22:53

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