Tree Forms Explained

Form refers to the shape of the tree, defined by the pruning that it has received. All our trees have received formative pruning pertinent to the species and form described below.

Please note the photos within the product tables (click on them to enlarge) can be used as a guideline, but as all plants are unique they will vary slightly.

Single Stem / Pruned and Shaped Trees

Classic shaped tree with a single stem that has had pruning to help create a beautiful, natural shape for the species. It is one of our most popular forms.

Top Grafted Trees

A tree that has been top grafted will have a height noted next to the form that refers to the length of the clear stem (i.e. before the branches start). The clear stem will not grow any taller, only the head of branches will develop. Top grafted trees are ideal for smaller gardens or patios and are easy to maintain as they will not require any complicated pruning.

Feathered Tree

A feathered tree has branches from the bottom of the trunk all the way up. These branches can be removed if a clear stem is required.

Multi Stem Trees

A multi-stem tree has two or more stems arising from or near ground level, growing from one root system. Trees with decorative bark, such as white birch, are often grown this way to give maximum bark appreciation.  Customers should take care to ensure they are buying a proper multi-stem and not a "3 in a pot" type arrangement which is a much cheaper growth method (our are the real deal).

Starter or Maiden Tree

A starter tree, also known as a maiden, is a tree that hasn't had any formal pruning and will be quite whip-like. This form is usually applied to 1 year old trees.

Bush

On our website a bush means a plant with many stems low down, rather than one singular clear stem.

Clump

Several plants in one pot that can give the appearance of a multi stemmed and very bushy tree.

Climber

A plant that is a natural climber and will be delivered usually running up a bamboo cane, ready to position in the garden.

Standard Tree

A more mature tree with an upright clear stem of approximately 1.8m-2.0m (measured from the soil to the lowest branches of the crown), which then supports a branched crown. Depending on the species or cultivar, the crown may have a central leader with side branches or have a fully branched head. Standards are available in different forms relating to their girth size (circumference of the stem measured 1m above soil level), not height.  Note: although heights are given for these trees, it becomes less significant and should be used as a guide, with girth becoming more important.

Standard: either 6-10cm or 8-10cm girth, approximately 2.5-3.0m in height.

Premium Standard: 10-12cm girth, approximately 3.0-3.5m in height.

Heavy Standard: 12-14cm girth, approximately 3.5-4.5m in height.

Extra Heavy Standard: 14-16cm girth approximately 4.0-6m in height.


Left to right: Pruned & shaped tree, top grafted tree (grafted head shown in green) and bush form.

Apple tree rootstock diagram

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