Pruning is an essential aspect of tree care, promoting healthy growth and maintaining the overall well-being of trees. However, when pruning is done incorrectly, there can be some rather severe consequences your arboreal pals… By understanding the risks associated with terrible pruning, thereby all the better suited to ensuring the longevity and vitality of your trees, you’ll be doing them a real solid. -Goodness knows they do enough for us.
Read along below as we explore the detrimental effects of bad pruning practices, and the importance of entrusting this task to professionals should circumstances warrant as much.
Nutritional Deficiencies and Stress
Bad pruning cuts can cause significant nutritional deficiencies in trees, depriving them of essential resources for growth and development. Improper cuts, such as flush cuts or stub cuts made too close or too far from the trunk, respectively, disrupt the tree’s natural nutrient flow. This disruption weakens the tree, making it more susceptible to diseases and pest infestations. Additionally, incorrect pruning techniques can put unnecessary stress on the tree, especially if performed at the wrong time or with inappropriate tools.
Impaired Growth and Structure
Over-pruning and other incorrect tree trimming is antithetical to their proper growth and structure. Trees rely on their leaves to produce food through photosynthesis. Excessive pruning removes an excessive number of leaves, so… hungry trees eventually begin to experience stunted growth. Moreover, improper pruning cuts (such as heading cuts made randomly) disrupt that natural structure of the tree and can lead to weak branch attachments and potentially concurrent hazards.
One of the most common and detrimental pruning mistakes is “tree topping.” The term refers to the cutting of branches within the main trunk; the practice severely damages the tree’s structure and compromises its overall health. The trunk of a tree is vital for providing stability and supporting the tree’s growth. Unless there is an emergency situation, the trunk should be left untouched.
Additional Pruning Mistakes
Several other pruning mistakes can sap the health right out of your trees. Pruning oversized branches, for instance, often results in wounds inordinately difficult for the tree to heal, making it susceptible to decay and disease. “Lion-tailing,” a term for the haphazard (over)removal of inner branches and foliage, not only disrupts a tree’s natural balance, but can make it vulnerable to sunburn and situate remaining branches as highly damage-prone. Additionally, excessive pruning of branches from the tree’s crown can lead to “systemic” stress and weaken the overall structure. And damaging tree bark during pruning is a failproof method of creating countless tiny entry points for pests and pathogens, vastly increasing the risk of infestation, infection and further damage.
Proper pruning is crucial for the well-being of your trees; bad pruning—even if errors are solely resultant from good-natured overzealousness!—can ultimately lose ya some trees. So, to ensure the optimum long-term health and happiness of your trees, it’s almost always best to leave pruning to professionals who have the knowledge, experience, and proper tools to perform the task safely and effectively.
Tree Care and Maintenance from Harford Tree
Ready to have the beautiful yard you have always dreamed of? Harford Tree Experts & Landscaping, Inc has been in the business for decades, providing customers with quality work and quick responses all at the right price. We service the areas of Harford County, Baltimore County, Baltimore City areas including Bel Air, Fallston, Perry Hall, Towson, Essex, Parkville, White Marsh and Middle River.
For service during business hours, reach out to us or give us a call at 410-592-7321. We offer 24/7 emergency service as well, just give us a call at 443-250-6649. For updates about our business and more informative tips, follow us on Facebook and Twitter.