upright. epicormic shoot arising from the [ trunk or branches of a plant above the root graft or soil line. Incorrectly called a sucker (contrast with sucker).

watersprout (Wikipedia)
Vertical water sprout on Prunus
Water sprouts arising from epicormic buds within the trunk of Betula

Water sprouts or water shoots are shoots that arise from the trunk of a tree or from branches that are several years old, from latent buds. The latent buds might be visible on the bark of the tree, or submerged under the bark as epicormic buds. They are sometimes called suckers, although that term is more correctly applied to shoots that arise from below ground, from the roots, and a distance from the trunk. Vigorous upright water sprouts often develop in response to damage or pruning.

The structure of water-sprout regrowth is not as strong as natural tree growth, and the shoots are more subject to diseases and pests. A system of principles of pruning considers this type of shoot undesirable on orchard trees because very little fruit is produced on them.

Vigorous water sprouts are useful as scions in grafting.

« Back to Glossary Index