Tree Trimming Basics and Tips

Tree Trimming Basics and Tips

Tree Trimming Basics and Tips

Knowing the basics about tree trimming makes the work involved easier to take on. In addition, there are plenty of helpful trimming tips that can help keep trees in excellent, healthy shape. With the proper knowledge and equipment, pruning trees to maintain their appearance and health and eliminate potentially dangerous dead branches and other common issues can be manageable.

While there are seemingly endless tree trimming tips out there, staying focused on the basics until more experienced will help keep things workable. Alternatively, hiring a professional is often the most convenient and safe way to tackle tree trimming. is a reliable source for tree trimming in Orlando when hiring a professional is the best option.

Reasons to Trim or Prune a Tree

Trimming trees is generally done for one of three purposes: safety, aesthetics, or health.

  • Safety – Dead or broken branches and limbs can fall off of a tree at any time and are an immediate safety hazard. Also, if a tree's branches are obstructive to vision while driving, they should be trimmed away. Tree limbs and branches do occasionally grow too close to utility lines. Always contact the utility company to handle these issues.
  • Aesthetics – Pruning a tree is an effective way to maintain an aesthetically pleasing shape and appearance. However, be very careful not to impose an extreme or unnatural shape or size on a tree. The amount of trimming and pruning needed for that will often seriously damage the integrity of its heath.
  • Health – It is sometimes possible to save an infected tree by strategically pruning away affected limbs and branches. Thinning the crown of a tree can be beneficial in improving the airflow. Trimming or removing branches crossing or rubbing together can help ensure that they don’t fall unexpectedly.

General Tree Trimming Tips

Keep in mind that it is best to trim or prune a tree during its dormant season. Although technically, you can always prune a pine tree, it is still better to do so when dormant. The only exception is when it would be hazardous to do so.

Be conscientious about the size of the branch you are planning to remove. If it is less than five centimeters in diameter, removing it is okay. If it is between five and 10 centimeters in diameter, you should carefully consider not removing it. Removing branches larger than 5 centimeters in diameter can leave a tree with scars.  If a limb is more than 10 centimeters in diameter, you should only trim it for an excellent reason.

When possible, only trim branches that have v-shaped, weak, and narrow angles. Retain branches that have more substantial, U-shaped angles.

Lateral branches should be between one-half and three-quarters the diameter of the stem at the point of attachment. Otherwise, you should trim them away.

When pruning is complete, the ratio of tree height to the living crown should be about two-thirds.
Try to trim away branches when trees are still young. They are usually much easier to manage at that point, and the risk of causing nasty scars is much lower.

Never trim a branch too close or too long. You shouldn’t remove the branch collar or leave a large stub.

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