Tree Trimming Mistakes to Avoid

tree pruning mistake

Tree pruning is best left to the pros. It’s dangerous work, climbing trees, using chainsaws and lowering heavy branches to the ground; and it can also be dangerous for the tree as well. Trees that are improperly pruned can suffer from a lifetime of damage.

Instead of putting yourself and putting the tree itself at risk, call someone who is trained and experienced to do it for you.

This will result in much healthier trees and a safer environment near your home for several reasons:

  • Healthy trees are sturdier and not as likely to cause damage during severe storms
  • Maintained trees won’t attract or spread parasites and diseases
  • Pruned trees grow more flowers or fruit
  • Trimmed trees create shade while still allowing air to flow through their canopies and your landscaping

MT Tree Trimming strongly encourages trimming trees that are near your home or any that are an integral part of your landscape.

Is Tree Pruning Necessary?

It is not necessary. But it is important. Trees are hardy and survive on their own across the world, in various different climates and regions, without pruning.

That said, there are several benefits of tree pruning, so it’s definitely recommended for any trees that you value. This can include sentimental trees, fruit trees and flowering trees or trees that offer an important job for your house, such as shade or home to wildlife.

Tree Pruning Gone Wrong

Tree pruning is a complicated project. You need the right tools and a lot of information to ensure the project is done correctly. The vast majority of homeowners don’t have any of these!

But that’s alright, because there are a lot of professionals available who know exactly how to correctly trim trees for an affordable cost to you including all of the certified arborists throughout Montana we team up with!

Below are the 5 most common mistakes homeowners make when they attempt DIY tree pruning that can lead to several tree problems. These are things that a professional arborist from MT Tree Trimming will know, and that’s why their services are worth paying for!

Trimming Too Much

When done correctly, trimming is an ongoing process. Beginning when your trees are just 2 or 3 years old, they should be maintained by an arborist if you care about them and intend to keep them healthy.

A huge mistake that people often make when pruning trees by themselves is cutting too much of the tree at a time. This happens because they have let the tree’s growth get out of control and try to correct it all at once. Ideally, you should not cut off more than 5-20% of the tree’s crown at the actual removal cut. It is much easier to do this during a time of year that there are no leaves, but a certified arborist is able to safely prune trees any time of year.

Trimming in the Wrong Place

An experienced arborist knows where to trim each limb to prevent damage. This cut should occur just beyond the branch collar, the exact place where the branch connects to the tree trunk.

Trimming too close to the branch collar exposes the tree to pests and decay. Cutting too far away from it leaves an unsightly stump when the tree recovers. Most DIY tree pruning leads to an improper cut, leaving either structural or aesthetic problems.

Pruning Large Branches

Branches larger than 4 inches in diameter shouldn’t be pruned unless it is absolutely necessary. Cutting off a branch of this size can lead to imbalance in the tree and expose it to insects and rot as the tree recovers from such a large loss.

Conservative pruning every year ensures that the company only has to remove branches that are 2-3 inches in diameter, which results in a more attractive shape for the tree and less risk of harming the tree or exposing it to decay and pests.

Topping the Tree

Tree topping is no longer a type of pruning, and for good reason! During this process, tree trimmers would cut the top off of the tree to achieve the desired height. It was not attractive nor was it beneficial for the tree, so the vast majority of arborists do not practice tree topping currently.

During DIY tree trimming, you may think this is an easy way to reduce the height of your tree with just one cut, but once you have cut the top of a tree off, there’s almost no chance that it will ever return to a natural shape.

The Solution? Call MT Tree Trimming

Your tree may never recover from bad trimming.

Doing this job yourself might seem like a way to save a little money, but you could end up with way more expenses trying to revive damaged trees, so it’s a lot safer (and more economical in the long run) to hire a certified arborist in Montana from MT Tree Trimming.

Limbs don’t grow back. The tree will grow more, but not in the same places, which can lead to odd shapes that might take years to correct. The tree might end up looking bad for the remainder of its life, all because of just one pruning mistake.

Bad trimming could also lead to death of the tree. Removing too many branches (and, therefore, leaves) can inhibit the tree’s photosynthesis process, which means it won’t get all of the water it needs or enough sunlight and carbon dioxide to continue growing.

Cutting off too many branches could also send the tree into a state of shock. Shock can be overcome, but it does take a lot of care and patience. Even with the right maintenance, a tree experiencing shock may still die.

Avoid all of these tree trimming mistakes and call MT Tree Trimming to speak with a tree care specialist in Montana able to customize a long-term plan to ensure your tree continues blossoming and looking beautiful for years to come!