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FLF backbudding like crazy- help!?

Elissa Norris
5 years ago

So I gave My fiddle leaf trees the properly scheduled hard prune about 2 weeks ago in Houston ( 4 trees total... 2 single stem & 2 had 1-2 puny branches; all trees 5-6 ft y’all) I knew The trees were very healthy going into to this years hard prune (2-3 yrs following all of Al‘s advice) and i only needed to repot one ( w a tad root pruning) as all others were repoted in gritty last year this time so I did expect a great backbudding to transpire this year but WOW. I’m both confused & amazed at what I’m seeing. I was Expecting to see many buds appear in different leaf axils but as you see in this Pic in comments I cant believe I’m seeing 6 buds arising above the top two leaf axils alone ( there are also many more new buds also occurring lower, the leaf below this cluster has two buds just above a single leaf axil). Two of the trees ( that have had best year round sun) are this prolifically backbudding So now i am clueless what to do now! I know From past experience these Trees will/ can end up terminating ongoing growth at what initially appears to be a new branch bud but I’ve never seen anything remotely close to this. Will the tree sort itself out? Should I , or CAN I help it choose a healthy number of buds ( in the position I would Like ;) and if so how do I Best tell it to terminate growth from the other new buds? Geez Hope this is all making sense!

And since I may have a great “problem“ on my hands, how many main branches total do I want ( for the currently popular top heavy branched look? I’m thinking most FLFs I see Like this all are branching from a three total branch’s ( aka one leader + two other main branchs) so would I want 4-5 branches even if falling within the right height i want the branching to initiate from knowing that I’m going to be also be pinching/ branching from each of these branches now? Thanks for all the advice as always!!

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