Burr Oak Trunk Chop

Kingpoutine

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I just picked up a Burr Oak because I really like them as a tree. Now I am aware that the have huge foliage and traditionally not great for bonsai but I want to mess with it.
I know it’s late in the season but could I trunk chop it now?
 

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Potawatomi13

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If wanting bigger trunk NO. Let grow UP until trunk is size desired then shorten to where wanting any taper to start. Oaks generally pretty good back budding after drastic cut backs. Also will want to get into much shorter grow box and start shortening tap root next spring. Depth of grow box very much depends on how much tap root can be PRACTICALLY shortened. Having side feeder roots remaining very critical.
 

LittleDingus

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I just picked up a Burr Oak because I really like them as a tree. Now I am aware that the have huge foliage and traditionally not great for bonsai but I want to mess with it.
I know it’s late in the season but could I trunk chop it now?

That looks like a graft...and a high one at that?? If you trunk chop it, you might not have a burr oak no more :(

Is the tree a cultivar? That would explain the graft.
 

Shibui

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A previous chop would also explain that change in the trunk that looks somewhat like a graft union.

Oaks are generally good at new buds on bare wood, especially when all growth is removed, so chop is a good option. Not sure how burr oak responds to time of chop but it should still be early enough in summer to get new shoots this year.

I stopped growing single trunks to thickness before pruning many years ago. The trunk thickening may be quicker but the subsequent healing of large scars and regrowing new leader and canopy takes many years and negates any time saving IMHO.
I get a much better result and little difference in timeline by regular prune and grow cycles.
Grow trees however you want. Just my 2c worth
 

Kingpoutine

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That looks like a graft...and a high one at that?? If you trunk chop it, you might not have a burr oak no more :(

Is the tree a cultivar? That would explain the graft.
It doesn’t look like a graft to me. Looks like at one point the tree had 2 leaders growing out that point in the trunk and one was removed. I was somewhat worried it was a graft the way it looked but I don’t think it is.
 

Kingpoutine

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The end of every years growth looks the same they all kinda look like grafts
 
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The Google gods responded to a query for "grafted burr oak" with one hit, a post by a single individual on a gardening forum, with no explanation of the source. A search for burr oak rootstock produces a number of hits discussing the merits of using burr oak as the rootstock for less vigorous oak species. I think that @Shibui is right - it looks to be just a strong shoot off of a cut trunk. If you look at the leaf scars above and below, they are quite similar.
 

HorseloverFat

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the merits of using burr oak as the rootstock for less vigorous oak species.
This makes sense if you ever DUG burr oaks....

Even 1-3 year trees are.... perplexingly “sturdy” and difficult to move.

It does look like a graft... but that makes no sense considering the “exposure” I have seen them withstand..

You’re in Canada... so I’m assuming STRONGLY that it’s on it’s own roots....

But that “part”......looks JUST like a “piss-poor” graft.

Cool Tree!

I have some I hunted out.. but COULDN’T dig without a larger saw then I brought. 🤣🤣
 

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