Tree Trimming and Pruning FAQ’s

Doug Bedford June 19, 2017

1. What does Red’s Tree Service do for tree trimmings?

-Removes dead limbs

-Removes limbs that obstruct streets, driveways, windows, etc.

-Eliminates dead, diseased, or insect-infested limbs

-Thinning or removing branches to allow more sunlight

-Enhancing the shape and form of the tree

2. What is the difference between tree trimming and tree pruning?

Primarily, tree trimming is for shrubs and hedges while tree pruning is for trees and shrubs. Trimming is to ensure that the shrub or hedge will grow perfectly, but pruning is for protecting the tree or shrub. Pruning services tend to get rid of dead, loose, or infected branches so the shrub can flourish, or gives the shrub a different shape for aesthetic purposes. Tree trimming services is done to remove overgrown bushes so that shrubs can get more moisture and light.

3. How often should I get a tree trimming service done?

Usually, you get it done twice a year; pruning is done annually. However, the frequency all depends on the plant species.

4. Why is tree trimming important?

There are several reasons why you might want to cut your trees:

-Aesthetic – You ought to trim or prune a tree to keep the shape and appearance looking beautiful. You never want to change the shape of a tree or a shrub into an unnatural shape or size, and the amount that a tree is trimmed can severely damage it.

-Safety- You want to be careful of dead and broken tree limbs because they can fall off anytime and they can be a significant safety hazard. If a tree branch obstructs your sight while driving, then it should be trimmed right away. Some tree limbs might also grow too close to utility lines. If this happens, you should call the utility company to handle it.

-Health- Believe it or not, it is possible to save an infected tree by cutting the branches and limbs that are affected, but this has to be done strategically. Crown thinning can improve airflow through the tree or bush, and this can be beneficial for the tree. You should also prune if branches are crossed or rubbing together so that they don’t fall unexpectedly.

5. What is the best time of year to do tree trimming?

 It’s best to trim or prune a tree or shrub during its dormant season. The only exception is if there is a hazard. You can also technically prune a pine tree at any time of the year,     but it is still best to do it in its dormant season as well.

6. What are some general tips for trimming?

-Be conscientious of the size of the branch that you’re going to cut down. The maximum diameter you should consider is about 5 centimeters. If it’s five centimeters or less, it’s fine to remove it. If it is between five and ten centimeters, then you might not want to remove it, or at least reconsider. If it’s over ten centimeters in diameter, then you should have a good reason for cutting it. Otherwise, you shouldn’t.

-Try to prune branches when they are still young when they are still easy to manage. It’s also best to do this because the risk of leaving scars is lower.

-Don’t trim the branch too close or leave it too long. You don’t want to leave a large branch stub, and you also don’t want to remove the branch collar.

-The ratio of living crown to tree height should be two-thirds after trimming.

-You should only cut branches that have a weak, narrow, V-shaped angles. NEVER trim branches that have strong, U-shaped angles.

7. What are some tips for pruning?

– Crown thinning: It is the removal of a portion of smaller branches (usually at the outer crown) to produce a uniform density of foliage around an evenly spaced branch structure, and it does not change the overall shape or size of a tree.

-Keep lateral branches as evenly spaced as possible, and especially on younger trees.

-Never remove more than one-fourth of a living crown at once. If you have to remove more than that, you should spread it out over the course of a few years.

– Crown raising: It can be done to provide some clearance for pedestrians or cars pulling into driveways. The crown of a tree can be raised if pruning is done carefully. You’ll want to maintain live branches on two-thirds of the tree’s height. If too many branches are removed on the lower half, it may prevent the tree from developing a strong stem.

-Crown reduction: Crown reduction is different than crown thinning in that it reduces the canopy size of the tree, but it is not a good idea to get a crown reduction if at all possible. It is an extensive and severe form of pruning that is used for reducing the weight of possibly dangerous limbs, balancing an uneven tree, and preventing trees from obstructing or damaging power lines or buildings.

-If you have to remove more than half of the foliage from a branch, it’s best just to remove the whole limb.

-Prune lateral branches that are at least one-third of the diameter of the stem that needs to be removed.

8. What are some tree trimming techniques?

-Before making a cut, look for the branch collar, which is the swelling of a branch (or any part of a woody plant) that forms at the base of a branch where it is attached to the parent branch or to the tree trunk. Look for the branch ridge, which is on the upper surface and is parallel to the branch angle at the stem.

-Always cut outside the branch bark ridge and angle your cut down and away from the stem. Make sure not to harm the branch collar

-Always use the same technique to prune living or dead branches.

-If a stem is too long, there is a three-cut method you can use: Make a notch on the side of a stem that faces away from the branch that’s being retained.

Reds Tree Service team is experienced with any and all tree servicing needs. Whether that is to help you with tree trimming and pruning or you are just looking for information about tree care. Feel free to contact us and let Reds Tree Service now how our fantastic team can assist you.