Tree Pruning For Beginners – June 2019: Part 3

Pruning Approaches

Producing strong structure should be the emphasis when pruning young trees. As trees mature, the aim of pruning will shift to maintaining tree structure, form, health and appearance.

Proper pruning cuts are made at a node, the point at which one branch or twig attaches to another. In the spring of the year growth begins at buds, and twigs grow until a new node is formed. The length of a branch between nodes is called an internode.

Crown thinning, primarily for hardwoods, is the selective removal of branches to  increase light penetration and air movement throughout the crown of a tree. The intent is to maintain or develop a tree’s structure and form. To avoid unnecessary stress and prevent excessive production of epicormic sprouts, no more than one-quarter of the living crown should be removed at a time. If it is necessary to remove more, it should be done over successive years.

Branches with strong U-shaped angles of attachment should be retained. Branches with narrow, V-shaped angles of attachment often form included bark and should be removed. Included bark forms when two branches grow at sharply acute angles to one another, producing a wedge of inward-rolled bark between them. Included bark prevents strong attachment of branches, often causing a crack at the point below where the branches meet. Codominant stems that are approximately the same size and arise from the same position often form included bark. 

Removing some of the lateral branches from a codominant stem can reduce its growth enough to allow the other stem to become dominant.

Using Top Tree LLC

Top Tree LLC is your best choice for any tree stump removal needs in the Tri-Cities.  All of our technicians are highly trained and properly certified.  We are happy to answer any questions you have now or in the future.

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