Thanks for the reply blueberry and barry. I will try to take the leader down. I will be careful bleaching my tools also, thanks for the reminder. It would be nice if the survival rate was lower here, we didn’t have a crazy cold winter, but we did get to -15 several times, and highs in the single digits for weeks. Pretty average winter if I had to put a word to it. I’m in a prairie like setting with lots of blowing, so maybe that could help my case.
If I do cut back the leader, and it comes back, I agree, I will just remove the tree and replace it. I’m practicing my grafting skills so with any hope I’ll have plenty of replacement trees. Thanks again for the replies. I’m really glad I found this forum. Very helpful and the people seem very nice!