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Training mesquite

JoJo (Nevada 9A)
8 months ago
last modified: 8 months ago

I planted a small hybrid mesquite about 4 months ago. It's been growing vigorously, perhaps too fast. It was loosely staked for about 3 months. When I took the stakes out, it started leaning slightly. I know this is their natural form and I'm OK with it.

However, last week was extremely windy, and now the leaning is more pronounced. Is this a losing battle? What is your experience with training desert trees? I keep getting conflicting advice about prolonged staking.

Again, I'm not looking for a perfectly straight tree -- I like the natural form -- but I don't want it to snap or get uprooted.


Comments (3)

  • Bill_minn_3b {West Central MN}
    8 months ago

    If it were mine, I'd put the stake back in BUT don't tie it all the way up straight.

    And use an old nylon stocking or stretchy material so the tree can bend and sway with the wind, yet get pulled back up to where you want it when the wind subsides.

    3 months probably isn't long enough for the tree to harden up.

    JoJo (Nevada 9A) thanked Bill_minn_3b {West Central MN}
  • JoJo (Nevada 9A)
    Original Author
    8 months ago

    Thanks, Bill. I decided to put the stakes back in and used old pantyhose (my favorite gardening tool :) to secure it. Fortunately it's cooling down and I can reduce watering, so I hope the rampant growth will slow down, and the tree can work on the trunk and the roots rather than the canopy.

  • Bill_minn_3b {West Central MN}
    8 months ago
    last modified: 8 months ago

    You want the tree to move when the wind blows, the stocking helps protect the tree from breakage yet gives it some movement. Without plenty of movement, the tree won't adjust like it will with movement.

    I've noticed it can take a whole season for a tree to be 'on it's own' so to speak.

    Thanks for responding and try to come back and let us know how it all turns out. 8^)