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Pruning Tall Trees in Your Yard. Dos And Don’ts

One of the reasons people decide to invest in a property is to enjoy the lush greenery it offers. However, in order to provide you with the beauty and shade, trees need to be kept healthy. Pruning is an important responsibility of every landowner. It will help trees grow strong and beautiful. By doing that, you’ll not only remove dead branches but also allow the growth of the new ones. However, it’s a science as much as it is art. In order to do it correctly and avoid damaging the tree, you should get clued up about all the important dos and don’ts. Here are some of the important things you need to know before you start pruning your trees and enhance the look of your garden and yard.

1. It’s all about the timing.

Realizing the importance of pruning is only the beginning. The next important factor that you need to take into consideration is timing. Before you set the date, it’s important to think about the goals you want to achieve. Dead or fallen branches will require immediate action, but if you want to alter the shape of the tree or slow down its growth, it will require more thorough planning. If you wish to have your trees bloom in spring, then you need to do the pruning during winter. On the other hand, if you wish to slow down the growth of undesired branches, or change the tree shape, then it’s best to trim in summer. Whatever your desires, think about what you want to achieve and set your goals accordingly.

2. Choose the right tools.

As with any other job, the right equipment can make pruning way easier. Your tools should be sharp and of high-quality. Depending on your punning and trimming needs, you should get a pruner, loppers and a good saw (here). If you’re dealing with a branch that’s too high and can’t be accessed on a ladder, you’ll need professional help. In situations like these, it’s advisable to consider some boom lifts for hire to provide you with the necessary machinery for the job. By doing this, you’ll not only deal with the problem more easily, but it will also provide you with a great deal of safety which is undoubtedly the most important thing after all.

3. How to trim large branches.

When trimming heavy tree limbs, you need to be very careful not to damage the bark and ensure that the tree will heal properly. When you cut off a branch, the tree will cover the wound with a callous tissue in order to prevent disease and decay. Proper pruning involves three cuts. The first cut, also known as Notch Cut, is a small notch 2-3 feet away from the trunk made to keep the bark from splitting. A cut number two is called a Relief Cut is made completely through the branch, just outside the notch. The Final Cut is the one that matters the most. It should be right where the branch collar transitions to smooth branch bark. Cutting the branch too short or leaving it too long will cause damage to the trunk and make it difficult for the tree to heal.

4. Tree pruning methods.

The main goal of pruning is to improve the health and the shape of the tree. Some of the most popular tree pruning methods are thinning, crown raising, and crown reduction.

Crown Thinning

This method is used when you want to reduce the density of the tree by removing live branches. It increases air circulation and enables more sunlight to penetrate. Safety also plays an important role here since it will reduce the stress on certain limbs especially from wind, ice, and snow. Since the goal of this method is to keep the size and the shape of the tree, thinning should be done consistently. Make sure not to remove more than 20 percent of the tree branches and to trim the trees for crown thinning if you want to keep that unpruned look.

Crown raising

The purpose of this method is to lift the bottom edge of tree limbs. However, it requires smart planning and a lot of patience since it should be done gradually over time. If you decide to remove too many lower branches at once may weaken the tree. Keep in mind that the live crown should make up 60 percent of the tree.

Crown reduction

Unlike crown thinning which is performed to reduce the density of the tree, the crown reduction will do the opposite. It’s a method used on older, more mature trees with the purpose to make them stronger and to encourage new growth. Crown reduction will remove a tree branch back to a growing lateral branch. It encourages the growth of new limbs and foliage, making the crown lush and strong.


Pruning is necessary if you want your trees to grow strong, healthy, and beautiful. With all the important dos and don’ts, you’ll manage to do the best possible job and enjoy spending time in your mesmerizing green oasis.

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