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Upon a recent walk around our yard we found that a newly planted “pussy willow” was severely girdled presumably by rabbits living nearby. All four of the stems are completely bare from just above the base up to approximately 5-6 inches of the 4 foot tall plant. Can anything be done to save the pussy willow? Pruning spray or any type of bandage?Thank you

The bad news is that if the bark has been stripped off al the way around the stems than those stems cannot be brought back. The good news is that pussywillows are quite robust and new shoots will appear in spring and grow quickly to replace those you’ve lost.  Once the new growth appears in spring, cut away the ones the rabbits destroyed.   To prevent this next year you’ll want to take measures to keep this from happening again by surrounding the plant with deer netting anchored to the ground so that it will also prevent rabbits from getting at the plant.  More on that here:  http://blog.timesunion.com/gardening/the-fall-cover-up/7236/

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