January 2019 Spring Checklist: Part 2 – Pruning

We have some hot, dry weather here in the Tri-Cities. When it comes to dry weather, before deciding whether to prune your drought-stressed tree, first remove excess leaves. If moisture is present, growth will remain and buds will emerge. Also evaluate the tree’s surroundings, such as sidewalks, buildings and other obstructions, and the value of the limbs in question.

There are three levels to determine the value of tree roots and branches:

No value: Limbs are dead, broken or hazardous. Prune them at any time – you will not harm the tree.

  • Low value: Limbs are typically crossing or rubbing branches, or co-dominant branches that are the same size. Prune these with caution, keeping safety and tree health in mind.
  • High value: Limbs are often found on healthy, good-looking trees. Prune these only for cosmetic reasons.

Pruning Tips

In general, never prune more than 25 percent of your tree’s foliage at one time. In some cases, cabling and bracing might be better for your tree than pruning. But if pruning is necessary, a few guidelines can help you protect your trees from further damage:

  • Prune with sharp, clean tools to make small, clean cuts. Disinfect tools with rubbing alcohol.
    Only prune dry trees with angled cuts to help the water drip from the branches. Wet branches can spread disease if spores are present.
  • Avoid pruning branches that connect at a V-shaped crotch.
  • Remember that topping gives trees weak branching.
  • For trees with summer blossoms, prune them in winter before the buds break.
  • Some trees prefer to be pruned during certain times of the year, so check with your local, licensed arborist for advice.

In Conclusion
Here at Top Tree LLC, we strive to be the best at what we do. In order to do that, we ensure that our practices are consistent with optimal tree care, our arborists are properly trained, and our customer service is top notch. If you are searching for a superior tree service company in Pasco, we would like to earn your business.

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