Keeping your trees healthy and safe for many years to come is the end goal for all homeowners and arborists. However, you also must have your trees pruned regularly as a proactive measure rather than waiting for something to happen first. Dead, broken, or diseased branches can pose a threat to you or anyone on your property. Don’t wait to prune your trees until it’s too late; contact Martin’s Tree Service for professional tree pruning services in Cambridge. In the meantime, learn more about simple tree pruning methods that will help prolong the life of your trees.
Before you begin any pruning, whether it be DIY or with the help of professionals, be sure that your goals are evident across the board. Many a homeowner has called a professional service to repair the damage done in an afternoon of DIY. Many homeowners have also called a professional service to repair the damage done by another pruning service when a break in communication happened somewhere along the way. Common goals for pruning include:
- Specific branches
- Number of limbs
- Type of pruning method
- Disease containment
- Decorative accents
Pruning trees isn’t just picking up a few clippers and hacking away until you’ve removed a dead branch. The integrity of the tree must be preserved for it to live a long healthy life. While proper pruning does involve removing weak limbs that may be damaged or structurally compromised, there are other factors to consider. The actual objective of pruning is to improve the long-term structure of the tree and its health. When a tree remains healthy, it is less likely to be a danger to you or anyone else.
All tree pruning methods are based on scientific principles, and plant physiology guides arborists to make an expert decision about the welfare of a tree. Once they decide what will best serve the tree based on recognized arborist standards, the tree will be pruned in one of four different ways.
Thinning is a pruning method that reduces the density of branches at the crown so that more sunlight and air can reach the plant. Thinning is often necessary when a plant is being choked out at the bottom from a top that is too full.
Cleaning is a pruning method that removes broken, diseased, or dead parts of the tree. Cleaning is necessary to reduce injury from weak branches and the spread of disease.
Reducing is a tree pruning method that decreases the tree’s spread or height, or both. While not all trees can withstand this kind of pruning, it is common in roadside trees where limbs need to be cleared for powerlines or existing structures.
Like reducing but from the bottom up, raising is a tree pruning method that removes lower branches. Raising is necessary to maintain walk paths and visuals without blockages.
DIY efforts are commendable, but professional arborists complete training and schooling integral to preserving and conserving trees. Arborists recommend the following tips:
- Clean any shears thoroughly between uses
- Cut sharply on a slant to any buds
- Help your tree grow into a spreading shape
- Cut above buds that are aimed outwards
- Cut at wide angles to avoid splits
Remember, pruning requires significantly more finesse and training than just regular lawn work. Unacceptable pruning practices include removing parts of the tree for immediate aesthetic value only and without considering the tree’s long-term health. To maintain healthy trees:
- Do not pull, tug or rip branches
- Do not use dull shears
- Do not use rusted shears
- Do not practice topping
- Do not practice rooster-tailing
- Do not practice lion’s tailing
Martin’s Tree Service in Cambridge is skilled in pruning, and trained arborists are ready to assess the health of your trees. Contact Martin’s Tree Service today for more information about tree pruning.