Tree pruning

Pruning trees at the right time of year in St. Louis ensures a beautiful landscape and healthy, happy trees. Avoid any disappointment by knowing how and when tree pruning will be most efficient.

What is Tree Pruning?

Tree pruning refers to the practice of carefully removing selected parts of a tree, such as branches and pieces of a root system. Tree pruning is a difficult task, especially when it comes to looking after large shade trees.

Why Prune a Tree?

Pruning a tree benefits the overall health and appearance of a tree. There is a multitude of reasons to prune a tree, including:

Deadwood Removal: Deadwood refers to the dead areas of a tree. Deadwood occurs when a tree lacks sufficient sunlight, has suffered damage due to pests or disease or has damaged roots. Eventually, deadwood becomes weak and brittle, causing these pieces of a tree to easily fall. The most important reason to prune deadwood from a tree is to ensure the safety of anyone, or anything, that may be surrounding the tree.

Shaping: Effective pruning will also enhance the overall appearance of a tree. Many trees on the larger end of the size spectrum tend to grow as wide as they are tall, causing their branches to overtake the surrounding environment. Depending on the species of a tree, shaping is vital for the health of a tree to ensure enough sunlight reaches all the foliage. With effective tree pruning, you can eliminate any extra bulk that a tree may be carrying, improving its health, and look.

Thinning: This method of pruning attempts to thin out the branches of a tree, lowering its wind resistance. By allowing wind to freely pass through branches, the risk of any unnecessary breakage of limbs is decreased.

The Best Time to Prune a Tree

The best time of year to prune a tree depends on its species and size. The usual advice for an appropriate tree pruning season is during a tree’s dormant season, meaning the times of year when a tree is not growing. The ultimate goal of tree pruning is to cause as little stress as possible to a tree, and pruning it during its downtime causes a lot less stress than when the tree is attempting to grow.

For most big shade trees, such as maple or birch trees, pruning should be done during the late spring and early summer months in the St. Louis area. Oak trees are a bit different and should be pruned during the dormant season since they are quite susceptible to pests and disease.

If you have a tree with colorful leaves, try to prune during the late fall and early spring months. By pruning during these time periods, you can ensure the tree is receiving the sunlight necessary to turn green leaves into those beautiful hues.

Flowering trees, such as dogwood or crabapple, should be pruned in late spring, once all of the flowers have fallen off. Pruning the trees too early means that fewer flowers will develop throughout the blossoming season.

Tree pruning is a heavy job and requires extensive knowledge of each specific tree in an environment. For professional tree care advice and other tree services, Jackson Tree Service is here to help.