Trees are not just aesthetically pleasing; they play a vital role in our ecosystem. They serve as a source of oxygen, purify the air, regulate the climate, and prevent soil erosion. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure their proper care. The entire process should adhere to specific standards to safeguard the health and vitality of the plants. There are several rules that must be followed when pruning trees. Pruning is a complex procedure that demands knowledge and expertise.

Why is tree pruning important?

Tree pruning stands as one of the most crucial tasks in tree care. Its purpose is to eliminate dry, damaged, and diseased branches to prevent potential breakage and falling hazards. Proper pruning not only enhances the tree’s aesthetics and health but also promotes consistent access to sunlight.

How to prune the right way?

The key aspect is to prune trees only when necessary. Excessive pruning can harm their condition and increase susceptibility to diseases. It is essential to choose the right timing for pruning. Early spring, before trees begin active growth, is the optimal season. Pruning during other times of the year can weaken trees and cause sap loss.

Before commencing pruning, ensure you have the appropriate tools. Shears and scissors are commonly used, but it is important to check their sharpness to avoid damaging or weakening the plant. Only prune branches that genuinely require it, such as those that are dry, damaged, or diseased. Over-pruning can significantly weaken a tree and potentially lead to its demise.

Start by carefully assessing the tree. Thoroughly inspect it and identify the branches that necessitate trimming. Cut at an angle to prevent water accumulation on the cut surface, reducing the risk of tree diseases. Avoid cutting branches too close to the trunk, as this may create difficult-to-heal wounds that could invite tree diseases. Maintain a minimum distance of several centimeters from the trunk.

Additionally, avoid excessive thinning of leaves in the crown. Leaves are vital for the tree’s health as they facilitate photosynthesis. Removing too many leaves can weaken the tree and hinder its energy production capacity.

It takes several years for a pruning wound to fully heal in a plant. It is important to keep in mind that the tree will have reduced resistance to viruses, bacteria, and fungi during the healing process. Therefore, it is essential to provide proper care. Thoroughly clean the cut area and smooth out any jagged edges with a knife. There are products available in the market designed to aid in wound healing, which can be applied after making the cut. Periodically inspect the healed surface every few years and reapply the product if needed.

Bartłomiej Haba