Hi we bought and planted 5 x 1m high Lilly Pilly over a month ago to be a hedge. I read some advice on the internet to prune it after planting to promote it growing horizontally. I mistakenly cut 10 centimetres off the top of each of the plants main trunk, after thinking this is what they meant.
The question is, will the plant now stop growing from that main trunk vertically? We ideally want the plant to be at least 2 metres high. Is there anything else we can do to repromote this growth or did i really stuff this up?
Thanks in advance!
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Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community @bbqguy. It's great to have you join us and many thanks for your question.
What you've done is send the majority of growth horizontally. You'll still be able to get the height you want out of them but you need to create a new leader. You might have set the vertical growth back 6 months but you can still end up with a healthy and tall shrub.
Currently, you have bar branching illustrated in blue below. The new shoots marked in red will become the new leader. They will need to be trained in a vertical position as they are currently horizontal. Personally I would recommend cutting one of the two branches so the plant knows where to direct the energy. I would then (over the course of a couple of months) tie the new leader back to the stub of a branch you had previously cut. You'll want to gently pull it into a vertical position.
If you haven't already I'd recommend you to apply some Richgro 5kg Organics Native And Protea Plant Food to encourage new growth. As with the initial advice, in order to get more vertical growth, you'll need to keep the horizontal growth in check. The type of trimming you did on the top with leaving the two bar branches would be perfect on the sides as that will encourage it to spread out and thicken up.
Please let me know if you need further information or had any questions.