Trimming your trees is a delicate science because each species and regional weather plays a role in overall plant health. Cutting most of a tree’s branches off from the leader could invigorate some species while killing off another. Before you hire tree trimmers for your property, take a look at some critical factors that must be evaluated.
Readying Trees for Fall and Winter
Depending on the region, you might have a severe cold season ahead. If your trees have many limbs that are weak or cracking already, prune these plants in the summer. Most species have completed their major growth and flowering periods by late summer so trimming at this point doesn’t compromise the trees’ health. Remove questionable branches and prune for overall shape. Don’t strip the trees of many branches, however. They still need enough leaves to photosynthesize and remain strong through the winter.
Encouraging Vigorous Spring Growth
Another trimming strategy is pruning in the late winter. Ideally, you want to cut away branches that don’t contribute to spring growth. By removing the branches in the late winter, you reduce the time that the tree is exposed to the weathering elements. New growth is almost instantaneous at that point, so that the tree recovers from the trimming stress. With fewer branches to support, the tree can concentrate on flowering and fruiting in the near future.
Avoiding Tree Diseases
One of the worst times of the year to prune your trees is fall. During this time period, spores and other particles float freely through the air. They’re essentially looking for any organic surface to latch onto and reproduce. It’s the last reproductive effort of the season for many fungi and other microorganisms. If you prune your trees in the fall and leave those cut sections exposed, they can succumb to fungi and bacterial growths.
Considering Tree Species
One of the major reasons why it’s important to consult with an expert for tree trimming is particular species care. In fact, some trees should be pruned at certain times of year for the best overall growth. Apple trees, for example, are best pruned in the late winter. Magnolia trees, in contrast, should be trimmed after their blooming period ends. Professional tree trimmers can easily create a plant care schedule that works for your property and specific tree species.
If you have a tree that’s just been established in your yard, it’s best to use a hands-off approach to its trimming. Freshly planted trees need time to work their roots into the ground. If you trim the branches and leaves too soon, the tree doesn’t have the strength to grow vigorously afterward. Ideally, allow this tree to grow another season before pruning it.