Bad Tree Pruning Practices You Need To Avoid

Tree pruning is one of the best ways to maintain the health and beauty of the trees in your yard. Pruning cuts away unwanted branches and leaves to improve the structure of the tree and encourage healthy growth. The practice requires an intricate understanding of tree growth and strategic cutting, so inexperienced people can have bad tree pruning habits.

Pro Tree of Knoxville offers superior tree trimming and pruning in Knoxville, TN. With the guide below, we will teach you how to avoid common pruning mistakes that could be detrimental to plant health and landscape aesthetics. 

4 Bad Pruning Practices To Avoid

Trees need pruning to create a balanced branch structure full of sturdy limbs, vibrant leaves, and a sturdy trunk. Experienced tree care providers remove limbs strategically to preserve the tree’s health. Cutting too much from the tree or working in the wrong place are bad pruning practices that could cause irreparable damage. 

Here are other pruning habits to avoid. 

1. Not Understanding “Bad Cuts”

Tree pruning doesn’t mean you simply cut off branches. You can make bad cuts that leave your tree vulnerable to damage, including the following:

  • Heading Cut: When a tree has a head cut, you’re cutting the branch randomly. Head cuts make the tree susceptible to pests and disease while stimulating the growth of weak branches on the exposed wound. 
  • Stub Cut: This cut occurs when you leave a stub on the end of a branch. 
  • Flush Cut: If you remove the extended area around a branch’s base, the tree cannot grow a callus over the cut to seal it. 

2. Pruning at the Wrong Time

The best time to prune trees is the winter. For most tree species, winter is the dormant season, making pruning less stressful for the plants. It’s also less likely for you to spread harmful pathogens to the tree at that time. 

3. Removing Branches in One Cut

When removing a large branch in one cut, you could accidentally tear the tree’s bark. Instead, follow the three-cut method for removing large limbs:

  • Carve a shallow mark on the branch’s underside to prevent bark tearing.
  • Cut through the limb at least two inches from its collar to remove it completely.
  • Remove the branch stub by cutting it slightly beyond the branch collar. 

4. Taking Off Too Much of the Tree’s Crown

Proper pruning is long-term maintenance because the tree needs time to heal from the cuts. Removing too much from the tree’s crown at once can cause substantial stress to the plant, leading to weakened branches. Experienced tree care professionals remove between 5% to 20% of the crown during a single pruning to prevent this issue. 

Turn to the Professionals for Proper Pruning Practices

Pro Tree of Knoxville is a leading licensed and insured tree service offering exceptional tree care at competitive prices. Our respected and experienced arborists have the expertise to maintain the health and beauty of your property’s trees. Our certified professionals don’t have bad tree pruning habits, and we know the best time to trim trees

 Call (865) 294-0062 to request an estimate for professional tree pruning.

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