If you’re like most homeowners, you probably think of pruning your trees as a necessary evil. It’s not always fun, but it’s essential for the health of your trees. Unfortunately, many people make common mistakes when pruning their trees. That’s why the certified arborist at Mountain West Arbor Care would like to discuss the top tree pruning mistakes to avoid. By avoiding these mistakes, you can help ensure that your trees stay healthy and look great.
What is Tree Pruning?
Before we discuss the mistakes to avoid, let’s briefly talk about tree pruning. Tree pruning is the process of removing dead or dying branches from a tree. This helps improve the tree’s appearance and can also help it stay healthy by preventing the spread of disease.
Pruning also helps encourage new growth, which can keep your trees looking full and lush. When done correctly, tree pruning can be a great way to improve the health and appearance of your trees. Now that we know a little bit more about tree pruning let’s look at some of the mistakes you should avoid.
Not Pruning With a Goal in Mind
One of the most common mistakes people make when pruning their trees is not having a specific goal in mind. They may think they need to prune their tree because it’s getting too big or because it hasn’t been pruned in a while. But without a specific goal, it’s easy to make mistakes that can damage your tree.
Before you start pruning, take a step back and ask yourself what you’re trying to accomplish. Do you want to reduce the size of your tree? Improve its shape? Remove dead or dying branches. Once you have a goal in mind, you can start planning your cuts.
Not Knowing What Parts of the Tree to Prune
Another common mistake is not knowing which parts of the tree to prune. When in doubt, it’s always best to consult with an arborist in Boise. They will be able to assess your tree and make recommendations on what should be pruned.
In general, you should only prune live branches. Dead or dying branches can be left alone, as they will eventually fall off on their own. Also, avoid pruning more than 25% of the live branches from your tree at one time. This can shock the tree and cause it to become unhealthy.
Pruning at the Wrong Time of Year
Timing is also essential when it comes to pruning your trees. Many people make the mistake of pruning their trees at the wrong time of year. The best time to prune most trees is during the late winter or early spring. This is before the tree’s new growth begins so that you won’t damage any new buds. Of course, there are some exceptions to this rule. If you’re not sure when the best time to prune your tree is, consult with an arborist in Boise, Idaho.
Making Incorrect Cuts
One of the most common mistakes people make when pruning their trees is making incorrect cuts. When cutting branches, be sure to use sharp, clean pruning shears. Avoid cutting too close to the trunk of the tree, as this can damage the bark. Also, avoid leaving stubs when cutting branches. These will eventually die and can become entry points for pests and diseases.
Using Dull Pruning Tools
Another common mistake is using dull pruning tools. Dull pruners can damage branches, making them more susceptible to disease and pests. They can also make it more difficult to make clean cuts. Be sure to sharpen your pruning shears before each use. If you’re not sure how to sharpen them, consult with an arborist in Boise, Idaho.
Pruning Too Much at Once
It’s also important not to prune too much of your tree at one time. Pruning too much can shock the tree and cause it to become unhealthy. Removing no more than 25% of the live branches during any pruning session is best. If you have a large tree that needs to be pruned, it’s best to do it over the course of a few years. This will give the tree time to recover between pruning sessions.
Need Help with Tree Pruning?
If you’re unsure how to prune your trees or want to avoid making any of the mistakes we’ve discussed, it’s best to consult with an arborist in Boise, Idaho. At Mountain West Arbor Care, we will be able to assess your tree and make recommendations on the best way to prune it. To learn more about our services or to get a free quote, contact us today by filling out our online form or give us a call at 1.800.767.8733