Before we provide more information on the "Art of Pruning", it is very important to note that pruning can be very dangerous to the integrity & structure of a tree. It is necessary to have an Arborist who is trained to determine the proper type of pruning required, identify the presence of disease, etc. We believe it is our responsibility to facilitate you with the best practices in arboriculture to achieve optimum health and appearance for the overall integrity of your trees.
Pruning is the most common tree maintenance procedure, because it enhances: safety, tree health, and structural aesthetics. It is pertinent that the Biology of the Tree is understood to prevent improper pruning and serious damage to the trees. If there is any form of disease in a tree, it can spread easily during pruning due to access to pathogens. The cuts made during pruning can open wounds in the trees very similarly to our own human bodies.
Pruning cuts need to be made just outside the 'branch collar', which should never be cut or removed. It is also important to reduce the weight of larger limbs prior to cutting them, or there is a big risk in tearing the bark. Most crucial of all is the amount of pruning that is done. Younger trees will tolerate the removal of a higher percentage of living tissue than mature trees. It must be remembered that these parts of trees work like parts of the body, providing the nutrients and vitals that the tree needs to grow, survive, and benefit the world around it.
Here are a few types of pruning:
Reduction: To decrease the height or spread of the canopy. This practice assists in minimizing interfering / encroaching branches and providing adequate growth space for neighboring materials. This is more commonly referred to as either Canopy or Crown reduction.
Cleaning: Selective removal of dead, diseased, detached, damaged or broken branches; To reduce the movement of decay or disease into healthy tree tissue; Alleviating hazard limb conditions in the canopy.
Thinning: Selective removal of live branches to reduce crown density, and to allow a more unobstructed passage of sunlight and wind through the canopy. May remove sucker growth (water sprouts) from base and tree interior.
Raising: Selective removal of branches to provide a vertical clearance. Crown raising is the shortening or removal of lower branches to provide ingress/egress for pedestrian and vehicular traffic or to eliminate encroachment to building structures, lightpoles, signage, etc.
Restoration: Selective removal of branches, sprouts and branch stubs due to improper pruning procedures, (Hat Racking, severe Heading, Liontailing) or storm damages. This practice will improve the structure, form, appearance and future health of the tree. Evaluation and selection of water sprouts in tree interior to promote growth into new limbs and branches.
Vista: Removal or pruning of select live branches to affect a view.
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