I have an unknown-age cherry that has a significant damage at 1.40m originating from wind and snow breaking a large branch (or several ones). The wound is large, about half of cambium is missing, and the wound is longish (35cm). It also looks really ugly, and there is, it seems, no chance that it will look nicer in future.

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Otherwise, the tree seems fine, and perfectly healthy, the tree is fighting with the wound successfully. The tree is a smallish cherry, less than 4m high, and doesn't grow anymore, it is probably one of ornamental ones. It is an upright tree, not weeping.

What are chances that the tree will regrow if I cut the trunk at 1.25m? And what about cutting the whole tree?

If such treatment makes sense, what would be a good time for cutting?

Another option is to plant an evergreen bush just beside the tree just to bring the wound out of sight.

1 Answer 1


It's been over a year since this question's been asked so chances are that the decision's been already made. However I'd like to point out that as a general rule a branch should only ever be cut down to its lowest (living) branch or bud, otherwise the tree is probably gone for good. In addition to that pretty much all the drupe-producing trees are grafted i.e. they're "hybrids" joined from two species from which one forms the root stock and the other the upper part. If you cut anything below the grafting point the species forming the upper part of the plant (responsible for quality fruits for instance) will be removed as well and only the root stock will remain (you probably don't want that to happen either). The same holds for coppicing as well (which in this case I'd strongly recommend against).

My recommendation would be to treat the wound with special ointments sold for this purpose and if you really insist on cutting, you could start by trimming off the uppermost branches and gradually (from year to year!) move downward.

  • 1
    The decision was not to touch the tree and to plant buddleia from the "ugly" side of the tree, 1m apart.
    – VividD
    Mar 15, 2019 at 16:09

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