Pruning trees is a key part of keeping them healthy. Pruning lets you get rid of branches that are rubbing together or branches that have been damaged by storms or disease. They also help you keep your trees looking their best. Here are three tips for properly pruning your trees.
Do it in late winter
The most common time to prune your trees is during dormancy, which means during the winter months. There are a few different reasons that pruning during the winter is the best strategy. First, when the leaves are off of your trees, it's very easy to see the branches and plan your pruning strategy. Also, your tree will then grow vigorously in the spring due to the winter pruning, which can be ideal if you want your tree to get larger.
Try to wait until late winter once the coldest part of the season is over. This is for your comfort and safety; it's hard to use pruning shears while wearing thick winter mittens.
Make sure your pruning shears are sharp
Before you start pruning your trees, check to make sure that your pruning shears are still sharp. If your shears are sufficiently sharp, you should feel like you're cutting through butter, not a hard piece of wood. If you're struggling to prune the tree, take your shears to a local garden centre to have them sharpened.
Sharp pruning shears are also better for your tree. If your shears are too dull, they may crush the branches instead of cleanly slicing through them. This injures your tree, but you can easily avoid it with the proper tools.
Disinfect your pruning shears between cuts
Pruning shears can spread fungal or bacterial diseases from branch to branch or from tree to tree, so it's important to disinfect your shears as you work. After you're finished pruning a branch, disinfect your pruning shears before moving on to the next. This will slow down the pruning process, but it's an important step to ensure that your trees stay healthy.
You can buy pre-mixed disinfectants for gardening tools at a garden centre, but you can also make your own cleaning solution out of bleach and water. To do this, add one gallon of water to a bucket and then mix in two cups of bleach.
Pruning will help keep your trees healthy and attractive, as long as you do it properly. If you need help pruning your trees, hire a tree service, such as Southbury Tree Service.