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RE: Re: smoke tree


Why do you cut the pussy willow down? To control size?  I have a black
catkin variety that I put in last spring. Probably will let it be this

Long Island, NY
Zone 7

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-gardenchat@hort.net [mailto:owner-gardenchat@hort.net] On
Behalf Of Kitty
Sent: Friday, March 21, 2003 6:15 AM
To: gardenchat@hort.net
Subject: Re: Re: [CHAT] smoke tree

> so a purple cotinus is a smoke tree?

Well, yes and no. Plants in the genus Cotinus are mostly Smoke Trees;
more specifically Cotinus coggygria. However, there are some hybrids too
that are called Smoke Trees. Anyway, most are actually green and have
lovely fall color. It's just that the ones in greatest demand are the
purples (hybrids or selections, I'm not sure?)- Royal Purple and Velvet
Cloak being the most well known. And now with 'Golden Spirit' for
contrast with a sort of golden chartreuse leaf and Grace with more of a
burgundy, there's lots more choices - and combinations.

I think smoke Tree is actually classified as a shrub, it's not that
tall, maybe 15 feet at maturity - if allowed to get there. To stool or
not to stool? Depends on what you want. Stooling will keep it a short
shrub - I'm guessing somewhere between 3 and 7 feet. These are just
vague observations on my point - just got my first 12 inch plant 2 yrs
ago, too young yet to stool. But if you actually want a TREE, well, you
wouldn't stool it. And stooling would have to begin when young, as Marge
said - you can't just hack off a 6 inch diameter trunk at 8-12 inches
high and expect the thing to live. Why is it called stooling? I don't
know, maybe cuz you cut it back to about the height where you would be
cutting if you were comfortably sitting on a milking stool while
pruning. Just as Ceres said - in late winter/early spring, cut back the
whole thing to 8-12 inches high. My only experience with stooling was
with Pussy Willow, Salix sp, except that I did it after the catkins
developed, so I could use them for decoration - then WHACK! all the way
back down.


If you have weeds, you don't have enough plants.

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