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Hello to all out there.

Hope you can give me some guidance.  I have a young cotinus coggyria planted in our lawn as a memorial shrub with my partners' mum's ashes underneath!!  It has grown enormously this season and is beginning to obscure our view of a decent flower border behind it.  My ideal way to overcome the problem would be to prune it gradually into a standard small tree. Do they take kindly to this sort of manipulation?  Any advice most welcome.

Good gardening, Annesandra.


I can't imagine it making a well shaped tree. Why don't you try the 'cut it back to base every year' method that a lot of people use. You won't get flowers but some lovely large leaves


A neighbour has one (or had as they never watered it this summer!).

I would start shaping it now - pic in site below to give you an idea.

Thanks nutcutlet and blairs. I will start cutting and shaping it based on what you say. It's thriving so should be able to take the brutality!!! Many thanks for your replies. Annesandra S.

I grow cotinus as a dense purple dome...I prune hard every year and then pinch out lead shoots two or three times during the summer. I like it that way. Thick, dense and deep colour

However, Annesandra, if you want a standard go for it but it wont be straightforward.  It needs to be single stemmed so you select a single shoot low down to form the "trunk" removing all other buds until you reach height you want.   Then you allow it to shoot as it does selecting evenly spaced strong ones.  It will look odd though for first year.

A naturally stooled cotinus looks best tho, in my opinion


I planted cotinus Grace last year and gave it a prune in spring. Judging by the amount of growth it's put on, (about 4ft in a short space of time) I would think that it will be rather top heavy as a standard and need strong staking. Verduns method is much better and you'll get lovely large foliage 

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