Before Trimming Your Trees

Before deciding to trim your trees, examine them carefully, taking note of any damaged or diseased branches. To trim a tree simply means to remove parts of the tree that are dead, dying, diseased or broken, with the objective of keeping it healthy and maintaining its natural shape. After speaking with Tree Services of Chino Hills, we have a lot of great advice to share with you.

Primarily this article is intended for novice do-it-yourself homeowners who own small trees around their homes; however there are also tips here that may interest professional arborists as well.

This informative guide will not only teach you how to prune trees but will show you which tools you need (and don’t need) to carry out the task successfully.

The first thing you should know about pruning is that anytime you make an inc towards the interior part of a tree it creates a wound and the tree will respond by producing chemicals to close that wound.

This is not always bad: wounds can be helpful because they allow air and water to enter the tree’s circulatory system, which promotes healing.

However, there are some trees (such as oaks) whose vascular tissue forms a thick layer over any such injuries; this type of wood tends to rot easily. Many people make the mistake of thinking their young oak tree needs “pruning” when what it really needs is for its trunk to be cleaned out so the vascular cambium has room for expansion.

The best time to prune your trees is during late winter or early spring when sap starts up in the branches after being dormant since the fall. The reason for this is that during springtime the tree’s circulatory system is flushed with sap, which carries with it pruning wounds’ natural chemicals and ensures a fast healing process.

In late fall or early winter your trees are putting out nutrients to produce flowers and seedpods, which means their vascular systems are full from feeding those reproductive parts. Any incisions at this time would allow a lot of sap to enter the tree’s interior, weakening it in a way similar to what happens when you forget to add antifreeze in your car during cold winter months.

Primarily there are two types of pruning cuts: thinning cuts and heading or pinching cuts.

Thinning cuts can be used to remove whole branches from the tree, as well as those that have died or those with diseases and insects.

To make a thinning cut you first need to look at where branches come out of your trees: there will always be one branch which starts the limb – called tip – and others further down – called lateral branches – which split off from it. You can see this best in evergreen trees such as pine and cedar whose lateral branches are clearly evident.