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This Vicary Privet is happy and healthy, and while you may not be able to tell just how many, it has way too many trunks. 

Not sure about the front yet, so here’s another angle. 

It’s time to make some decisions, but HOW?! I took a good long look and tried not to move too fast — a common mistake for me. There were a couple that I knew I wanted to keep, and a couple that really obviously needed to come out because they didn’t have much growth or were interfering with the keepers.

 This got things moving in the right direction, and after removing a couple I could get a better look. Now I could see that one was far too straight. Another was angled counter to the flow that was beginning to develop, and eventually it was clear that I needed to take it down to three. 

I am no pro at carving, but I decided to get a start on shaping all of these large cuts. 

In addition to hand tools, I put this Nibbler bit to work. 

I wired just a couple of branches to get them angled in the right general direction, but I refrained from pruning anything more than the trunks that were removed. 

Here’s how it looks now. 

And to give you an idea of my vision for the future, I will leave you with a sketch.