Tree Pruning 101: What You Should Know

Pruning is a tree maintenance practice that creates beautiful and healthy trees. This practice also increases the productivity and life span of trees. Unpruned trees are a risk to people and property. If you think it's time to prune your trees, consult an arborist for quality services. Here is a review of some basic pruning methods.

Crown Reduction

This technique involves reducing the height of the tree. It also entails lessening the mass of large branches. An arborist will use this pruning approach for young trees. 

For old trees, an arborist will remove the entire limb instead of trimming it. However, this technique aims at removing terminal branches to preserve the limb. Crown reduction lowers the risk of decay and helps trees to grow healthy.

Crown Raising

With crown raising, your arborist will remove the lower branches of the tree. This pruning approach aims to promote vertical clearance. This means clearing the way for landscape features and pedestrians. Heights above the ground level and distances from objects that need to be cleared help the arborist determine how many lower limbs should be pruned.

Crown raising may be performed on the entire bottom of the crown or a small portion of the crown. Over pruning of the lower limbs can affect the integrity of the tree trunk. It is important to note that you risk hurting the tree when you wait to remove the low limbs when the tree is too large. 

Deadwood Pruning

This involves the removal of dying, diseased, or dead branches. It is also known as crown cleaning. This approach aims to remove branches that could cause property damage or spread disease. Additionally, deadwood pruning is performed to improve the aesthetics of a tree. 

Usually, your arborist will not remove the entire deadwood. The tree specialist will decide on the minimum size of the dead branch to remove. As a result, the tree will look cleaner and less dangerous.

Crown Thinning

This technique involves the removal of branches to promote light penetration and improve air movement through the tree. Thinning opens up the tree's foliage and lightens the weight on heavy limbs. This approach also retains the tree's shape.

Like crown reduction, this approach is suited for young trees. The result of a crown thinning procedure is an open tree canopy that allows other plants to get sunlight.

In Conclusion

Tree pruning is mainly done in the dormant season after the leaves have fallen. Many people prefer to do it from January to March and to finish before spring sets in. During the dormant season, the tree's nutrients are stored in the roots; therefore, few food resources are required for growth. When the time of tree pruning comes, make sure you seek the help of an arborist.