Tree Trimming Mistakes to Avoid

tree pruning mistake

Tree trimming is best left to the pros. It’s dangerous work, climbing trees, wielding chainsaws and dropping heavy branches to the ground; and it is sometimes dangerous for the tree too. Trees that are improperly pruned can suffer from a lifetime of problems.

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

This will lead to healthier trees and a safer environment surrounding your landscaping for many reasons:

  • Healthy trees are sturdier and less likely to cause damage during severe storms
  • Maintained trees won’t attract or spread parasites and diseases
  • Pruned trees produce more flowers or fruit
  • Pruned trees offer shade and allow air to flow through their canopies and your property

WA Tree Trimming highly encourages pruning trees that are very close to your home or all that are a focus of your landscape.

Is Tree Pruning Necessary?

It is not required. But it is beneficial. Trees are hardy and can survive on their own all over the world, in a variety of different climates and regions, without being pruned.

That said, there are several benefits of professional tree pruning, so it’s highly recommended for any trees that you care about. This includes sentimental trees, fruit trees and blossoming trees or trees that perform an important job for your home, such as shade or wildlife habitat.

Tree Trimming Gone Wrong

Tree pruning is a complex project. You need the right tools and a lot of knowledge to ensure the job is done right. The majority of homeowners don’t have either of these!

But that’s alright, because there are a lot of services available who know how to correctly trim trees for an affordable cost to you including all arborists in Washington we team up with!

Here are the 5 most common mistakes homeowners make when attempting DIY tree trimming that can lead to several tree problems. These are things that a certified arborist from WA Tree Trimming will know, and that’s exactly why their services are worth paying for!

Pruning Too Much

When done properly, pruning is a never-ending process. Starting when your trees are just 2 or 3 years old, they should be maintained by a professional if you care about them and want to keep them strong and healthy.

A huge mistake homeowners make when trimming trees themselves is cutting too much of the tree all at once. This happens because they let the tree’s growth get out of control and try to correct it all at once. Ideally, you should only cut off 5-20% of the tree’s crown at the actual removal cut. It is easier to do this during a season that the leaves are off, but an experienced arborist is able to safely trim trees any time of year.

Pruning in the Wrong Place

A trained tree specialist knows where to cut each limb to protect against 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 has recovered. Most DIY tree pruning leads to an improper cut, leaving either aesthetic or structural damage.

Pruning Big Branches

Branches any larger than 4 inches in diameter really shouldn’t be pruned unless it is 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 cut off branches that are 2-3 inches in diameter, which leads to a more attractive shape for the tree and less risk of hurting the tree or exposing it to disease and insects.

Topping the Tree

Tree topping is no longer a type of pruning, and for good reason! In this service, arborists would cut the top off of the tree to achieve the desired height. It was neither attractive nor beneficial for the tree, so the majority of tree care companies do not practice tree topping currently.

During DIY tree pruning, you might think this is a good way to reduce the height of your tree with only a single cut, but once you have cut off the top of a tree, there’s virtually no chance it will ever return to a natural shape.

The Solution? Call WA Tree Trimming

Here’s the truth. Your tree may never recover from bad trimming.

Performing this project yourself might seem like a good way to save a little money, but you could end up with way more cost trying to revive damaged trees, so it’s really safer (and more economical in the long run) to hire a certified arborist in Washington from WA Tree Trimming.

Limbs don’t grow back. The tree will grow more, but it will not grow back in the same places, which results in odd shapes that might require years to fix. The tree could look bad for the rest of its life, all because of a single pruning error.

Improper pruning could also result in 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 carbon dioxide and sunlight to continue healthy growth.

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

Avoid all of these tree trimming mistakes and call WA Tree Trimming to speak with a tree care specialist in Washington able to devise a plan to ensure your tree continues blossoming and looking beautiful for years to come!