How to make a tree not grow?

Trees are one of the most important plants that can be in a garden, and not only because they are usually the tallest (only surpassed, and not always, by palm trees), but because of the multiple benefits they provide, namely: they provide shade, produce precious flowers and / or edible fruits, and also become a refuge for some animals, such as insects or some birds.

But when we are going to choose the species it is necessary that we take into account its dimensions once it reaches adulthood. You can do experiments of course, but for them to be successful, you need to have certain knowledge, that is, to know a little about the tree you want to put up and if it can live well in your area or not. So if you already have some problems or want to avoid them, then we will tell you how to stop a tree from growing.

How to limit the growth of a tree?

If we want to prevent a tree from growing too much, it is highly recommended to carry out some tasks, before planting in the ground, during and after. These must always be done trying to respect the plant, because we cannot and should not forget that it is a living beingand that doing things like pruning it can make it very weak if done wrong.

Although it sounds repetitive, I would like to insist on this: a bad decision can cause the death of the tree. So that let us know what are the measures to be taken so that the plant does not grow so much:

Prune it from time to time

Trees can be pruned to limit their growth

Pruning they have to be done at the end of winterusing previously disinfected pruning tools, for example:

  • Green branches less than 0,5cm thick: use household scissors.
  • Branches between 0,5 and 1cm thick: pruning shears.
  • Branches between 1 and 2 centimeters thick: hand saws.
  • Branches 3 centimeters or more thick: hand saws or hand saws.
  • Branches and / or trunks of 4 centimeters or more: to cut such thick branches or trunks, it is advisable to use electric cutting tools due to the effort that it would entail with manual ones.

What is there to prune?

Basically, you have to remove those branches that you see are wronglike the sick ones or the ones that are broken. But also, in order that your tree is not so big you can do the following:

  • Give it a design (respecting the plant). Look at the trunk: how does it grow: upward or does it lean ?; At what height does it begin to branch ?; What is your cup like: round, compact, open? In order not to fail, it is advisable to move away from the tree a bit to see it better. This makes it much easier to know what style you are going to give it. If you need more help, you can take a look at our article on bonsai styles, which although they are specific to these plants, can actually be applied to trees grown in the ground as well. After all, bonsai are nothing more than trees that, through pruning, manage to live well in trays.
  • Reduces the length of the branches: these cuts are highly recommended to start when the tree is young, that is, when it is about 2 meters at most. Later they can also be done, but it will be a little more difficult due to the height that the plant will have acquired. The objective with this is to make the cup branch more, and to be more compact. It is done simply by cutting a centimeter or several (but never more than half) from each branch.

Do not pay it

With the fertilizer, the plant is expected to grow, and also to do so a little faster than it usually does. Therefore, if we want just the opposite, that is, if we are not interested in acquiring a large size, we must avoid paying it. But beware, this also means that the plants that are close to you should not receive fertilizer either.

Tree roots can extend several meters. For this reason, even if you have a rose bush five meters from one, if you fertilize it, surely the tree will benefit from that fertilizer.

Plant other plants near him

If you plant other trees nearby, you will be able to limit the growth of all of them

Ideally, each and every plant in the garden has the necessary space so that they can grow freely, but if we want to limit the growth of a tree a bit, one option is to put other plants near it. Especially recommended are the fast growing oneslike many palm trees (Washingtonia, Phoenix dactyliferachamaerops, Syagrus, etc.), as well as other tree species such as the Common syringe or Brachychiton populneus.

With this, the growth rate of the plants is somewhat faster due to the competition that is created between them, but the size they reach is smaller due to the limitation of space. Yes indeed, They must be close but not together: leave a separation of at least 1 or 2 meters so that it can grow well.

How to prevent the roots of a tree from spreading?

Is there something that can be done? Of course yes. Sometimes the roots can cause more than one headache, but that is precisely why there are some measures that, once taken and put into practice, will solve our problems, or at least prevent them from getting worse.

Cement-filled trenches

One way to control root growth is by digging trenches around the tree. These They must be about 50-60 centimeters from the trunk, and they must have a depth of at least 1 meter and a width of at least 30 centimeters. Fill them with a mixed part of cement, three parts of construction sand and one of water, but also put iron rods to create a barrier that they will not be able to break.

Anti-rhizome mesh

The anti-rhizome mesh is used more to limit the growth of bamboo, but it is equally valid for trees. Is It can be put in after making the hole where you are going to plant themor later in the ditches. In the event that you cannot get it, you have the option of putting a double layer anti-herb mesh.

Plant the tree with a pot

If you plant the tree in a pot, it will grow less

Finally, another thing that can be done is to plant the potted tree in the ground. This will greatly limit its growth, both the total height of the plant and the length of the roots. But It is recommended that this pot be about 50 centimeters in diameter; In addition, it is essential that it have holes in the base.

We hope these tips have helped you to control the growth of your trees.

How to make a tree not grow?

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