· John Heider's Answer
· Hi Jeffrey-I have a few of the Coral Bark Japanese maples planted in large containers. They do at times grow shoots (stems) that outgrow the main shape of the tree and have a tendency to droop downward because of their length. Light corrective pruning of a stray branch is OK to keep the tree more symmetrical.
Light pruning can be be performed at any time of year other than during Spring when the sap is rising. If your Japanese maple has grown beyond the boundaries of the area it was intended to fill, major pruning may be necessary. Major pruning should only be performed during the dormant season (Winter), after the leaves have fallen and prior to leaf production in the Spring.
I have noted a few links to articles that will help you with any pruning. I also noted the Coral Bark plant file that will give you the plants characteristics and information on Planting, pruning, fertilization, and pest control. Just click on these links to go directly to the article and plant file.www.gardenality.com/Articles/340/How-To-Info/Pruning/How-To-Prune-A-Japanese-Maple/default.htmlwww.gardenality.com/Plants/250/Trees/Coral-Bark-Japanese-Maple.html
Hope this helped. Let me know if you have any other questions. I am a Japanese Maple addict, but Brooks Wilson has me beat. He is extremely knowledgable on Japanese maples and is always available for any questions you have on Japanese maples that others of us can't answer.