Pruning 101 – Cleveland Tree Company Tree Care Tips

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Pruning your trees is vital for your trees’ health and beauty. This process seems simple at first glance, but it is actually an in depth, very technical process. While this article will cover the basics of pruning trees, Kirtland Hills-based tree service companies, like Vancuren Tree Service, ensure a safe, proper, and beautiful prune each time you need them.

First, why is pruning important? One of the most important things you can do for your trees, pruning helps trees grow and can determine their shape. It removes dead or diseased branches, encourages growth and flowering, enhances aesthetics, and keeps trees safe.

Pruning is much more complicated than simply cutting off dead or long branches. The first step is understanding what climate conditions during which it is best to prune your trees. Some trees are best pruned in winter because it is easier to see dead and overgrown branches without foliage in the way. Others are best to prune soon after flowering. Trees and shrubs that bloom in the summer should be pruned in the winter or early spring before new growth occurs. In places that experience harsh winters, the best time to prune is late summer. When to prune can also depend on the type of plant. Many deciduous plants are best pruned in the late winter and early spring. Other times, it may be best to prune in the summer so you can see exactly how thick the foliage is and how much you would like to remove. For thinning purposes, this may be a good time because growth may be slower and it is less likely to stimulate new growth. Many experts recommend pruning prior to one month before the first frost in case an early frost occurs because it can damage plants at the wound point and you may not get the flowers or fruit you expect. While pruning a plant at the wrong time of year won’t necessarily harm the plant, it can impact its growth

Different pruning techniques are used for different purposes

Pinching is used to direct growth of shrubs with small leaves. Simply pinch off the terminal bud, or the bud growing at the top of a stem. This prevents the stem from becoming longer and helps create more bushy growth. This technique is usually used with annuals, perennials, and some vegetables.

Heading is done to stimulate buds and encourage more dense growth. It is achieved by cutting further back on the stem than the pinching method and is usually done with hand-held pruners. This stimulates the growth of buds closest to the cut. It helps to reduce height and enhance the plant’s natural shape. To do this, cut ¼ inch above a bud, and in a slope away from the bud. Cutting too close to the bud can kill it. Remove buds that face inward to if there are two or more.

Shearing is a form of heading that does not attempt to cut buds like the other methods do. It encourages many buds for new growth and must be done regularly. This method is best done on plants with small leaves because it cuts through leaves indiscriminately. On small-leaved plants, the cuts will be less noticeable. This is usually done for shrubs where a spherical or square shape is desired. Use hand-held or electric shears.

Thinning is a technique that is used to reduce bulkiness in plants. It is achieved by removing a number of buds along the stem. This way, you’re less likely to end up with clusters of shoots, or branches and stems that grow from tips of other branches. The type of tool needed depends on the thickness of the branch. You can use hand-held pruners, loppers, or a pruning saw. This is different from heading in that it removes branches from its point of origin. Make these cuts just above or parallel to the main branches of the tree or plant. This is also used for removing dead branches, which should be done as soon as possible. Make sure to cut into the healthy wood, below the dead portion of the branch.

While it is possible to prune your own trees, sometimes calling a professional is necessary, such as when wood is decayed or hollowed out, bark is peeling, there is raised soil or bare roots around the base of the tree, or girdling roots.

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Because pruning is the most important thing you can do for your trees, it is important to do it properly. A tree care company in Kirtland Hills, such as Vancuren Tree Service, can ensure that your trees are properly pruned and help you find a maintenance plan that keeps your trees healthy, safe, and thriving.

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