Tree Trimming: 5 Biggest Mistakes

Spring rolls around, and homeowners get ready to spruce up their yards. Often, this includes trimming the trees in hopes of encouraging new growth. Tree pruning can enhance the beauty of your property, but improper practices can damage your precious trees. At Woodeez Tree Service, we’ve seen it all, and we’re here to help you avoid some of the biggest mistakes homeowners make when trimming their trees.

1. Over Pruning

Over-pruning is one of the common mistakes homeowners make when trimming their own trees. While it’s important to remove dead, diseased, or damaged branches, excessive pruning can significantly weaken the tree’s structure, leaving it vulnerable to pests and disease, potentially causing permanent damage. Our team at Woodeez Tree Service strongly recommends adhering to the 25% rule. Never remove more than a quarter of your tree’s limbs in a single pruning session. Remember, a little pruning goes a long way.

Conversely, not pruning enough may limit your tree’s ability to grow and thrive.

2. Improper Timing

Timing is crucial when it comes to pruning trees. Trimming during the wrong season may stress the tree and inhibit growth. For most tree species, late winter to early spring is ideal. Sticking to this time will promote rapid healing of the pruned areas and minimize the risk of disease transmission. However, some trees, like fruit trees or flowering trees, may require specific timing based on their growth habits and flowering patterns. For instance, apple trees are best pruned in late winter, while cherry trees should be pruned after they bloom. Research your tree’s needs or call us at 585-352-8733 to determine the best pruning schedule for your specific tree.

3. Topping

Topping is the haphazard removal of large branches or the entire canopy, which refers to the uppermost layer of a tree’s branches and leaves. It is incredibly harmful to trees. It disfigures the tree’s natural shape and stimulates rapid, weak growth that is susceptible to disease and breakage. Our experts recommend crown thinning and pruning techniques that maintain the tree’s health and aesthetics.

4. Neglecting to Use Appropriate Tools

Using the wrong tools for tree pruning can result in uneven cuts, jagged edges, and unnecessary damage to the tree. For example, using a regular saw instead of a pruning saw can leave rough edges that are more susceptible to disease and pests. If you’re going to take on the job, it’s essential to invest in high-quality pruning tools, including hand pruners, loppers, and pruning saws. Ensure that each tool is adequately sharpened and sanitized before each use. Our professionals use state-of-the-art tools and equipment to ensure precise and efficient trimming with care to avoid impacting your tree’s health.

5. Failing to Seek Professional Help

Most homeowners can easily complete minor tree pruning, such as removing small dead branches or shaping young trees. However, complex or large-scale projects, such as pruning large, mature trees or dealing with trees near power lines, should be left to the professionals. Our team at Woodeez has the expertise and training to assess your trees’ health and structural integrity to provide pruning solutions tailored to promote long-term health and vitality. If you’re unsure about the scope of your pruning project, it’s always better to consult with a professional.

Call Woodeez for Your Pruning Project

Tree pruning is critical for maintaining the health and beauty of your trees and property. By avoiding these common mistakes and entrusting your more extensive tree care needs to Woodeez, you can ensure that your trees thrive for generations. If you’re ready to start your pruning project or if you have any questions, contact us today to schedule a consultation with our experts.

Author: Jeb Walworth
General Manager of Woodeez Tree Removal