There are three main reasons for tree pruning.
Firstly - for safety. When branches are too weak to survive heavy winds, snow or ice it's important that they are pruned. Other safety issues occur when branches are too low to allow pedestrians or vehicles - or, when tree limbs block visibility to stop signs or grow too close to power lines (crown lifting).
Secondly - for health reasons. It's important to prune a tree to allow air and light through and remove portions that are dead and diseased.
Thirdly - for aesthetic reasons. Pruning is a method used on trees that can help improve its overall look and shape. Effective pruning should leave the tree healthier and more attractive. Here are some basic tips to successful pruning.
1. What are you trying to achieve from pruning your tree? As mentioned above, the primary goals for pruning trees are to improve safety, plant health and the tree's visual appeal. What you intend to achieve will determine how you will trim your tree. In some cases, removing a tree that is too large for the space and replacing it with a more appropriate specimen may be the best choice.
2. Understand the natural shape of your tree. Trees grow in one of two basic shapes. Conifers like pine and spruce trees grow in a pyramid shape. These trees have a single stem that grows up the full length of the tree and all branches grow out of that stem.
Deciduous trees like oak trees grow in a spherical pattern. They have a single stem at the bottom that divides into major branches, which then subdivide into still smaller branches. Think about your tree shape before you start pruning.
Correct pruning works with these natural grow patterns but not all limbs should be cut shorter to force a tree into these shapes. Instead, pruning is about selectively removing limbs without damaging the main stem.
3. Plan before you begin removing branches. Good choices for pruning include branches that overlap or rub other branches. Pruning should improve access to light and air for the remaining branches. It is also recommended to remove any branches that aren't firmly attached. Typically, v-branching patterns are not as healthy as u-shaped branches. Also, remove any branches that are dead or diseased.
4. Prune at the right time. In general, the best time to prune trees is during dormancy in late fall or winter. It is easier to see the growth patterns of deciduous trees after they have shed leaves. Trees are more likely to repair their wounds and prepare for new growth in the spring when pruned in dormancy.
Finally, for best results consider working with an expert. In many cases, the best choice is to consult a certified Arborist or other tree expert. Pruning at the wrong time can leave your tree vulnerable to parasites and other pests. Pruning incorrectly can make it difficult for a tree to heal, whilst ineffective pruning can leave a garden with trees that aren't as safe, healthy or attractive as they should be.
At Tree Surgeon Essex, we offer the following tree services across Havering, Brentwood, Basildon and Chelmsford:
Tree removal or felling trees
Crown lifting or Crown raising
Emergency tree care
Call us today on: 01708 578 017.