Most tree owners have heard that pruning is a chore to be done during the spring or summer months. While this is true, fall is a great time to prune as well. Once leaves drop, it’s easier to see where the tree has structural weaknesses. It is also a time to see if the tree needs branches or limbs removed to minimize damage in winter weather. Let’s take a quick look at fall pruning guidelines.
Why Prune Proactively?
The truth is that while bad weather can damage trees no matter what you do to prevent it, proactive pruning can minimize the potential damage. Reducing the number of open wounds in cold weather helps the tree remain strong and healthy until warm weather returns.
Colorado State University advises to always look for limbs that form narrow “V” crotches when you prune. This is where damages is likely to occur. You should also remove any branches that look dead or previously damaged because they are most likely to break during storms. This will preserve your trees against snow, ice, and high winds.
When to Perform Fall Trims
You can prune in fall at any time you need to remove dead, damaged or diseased branches. While this does pose a small chance of weakening the tree, it’s a good to remove limbs before they get ripped off in storms, creating jagged wounds that are much more dangerous for trees.
Annual Pruning Vs. Winter Protection
You should note that pruning in fall does still expose the tree to cold, pests, fungus, and disease at a time when its defenses are low. Confine your pruning efforts to removing limbs or branches that pose a danger to people, property, or the tree itself. Perform your annual pruning for shape at the end of the dormancy period, just before the tree breaks bud in spring.
Call in an Expert
While there are some pruning chores homeowners can do without endangering themselves or the tree, certified arborists are trained and outfitted for the big jobs. If you need help, call Premier Tree Solutions. We’re a growing tree removal business based in Atlanta, Georgia, and we specialize in pruning, tree removal, storm cleanup, storm damage repair, branch clearing, and stump grinding. Let us know how we can help today at 404-252-6448 or contact us here.