Tree Trimming Mistakes to Avoid

tree pruning mistake

Tree pruning is best left to professionals. It’s dangerous work, climbing trees, using chainsaws and dropping 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 problems.

Instead of putting yourself in harm’s way and the tree itself at risk, find a professional who is knowledgeable and experienced to do the job for you.

This will lead to healthier trees and a safer environment surrounding your home for several reasons:

  • Healthier trees are sturdier and less likely to cause damage during severe storms
  • Maintained trees won’t attract or spread diseases and parasites
  • Pruned trees produce more flowers or fruit
  • Trimmed trees offer shade while still allowing air to flow throughout their canopies and your property

VA Tree Trimming highly encourages pruning trees that are very close to your home or any that are an integral part of your landscape.

Is Tree Pruning Necessary?

It is not required. But it is important. Trees are very hardy and grow on their own everywhere in the world, in various different climates and regions, without being pruned.

That said, there are several benefits of tree trimming, so it’s definitely recommended for any trees that you care about. This includes sentimental trees, fruit trees and blossoming trees or trees that perform an important service for your house, such as shade or home to wildlife.

Tree Pruning Gone Wrong

Trimming a tree is a complicated project. You need the correct 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 OK, because there are plenty of arborists available who know how to correctly prune trees for an affordable cost to you including all arborists throughout Virginia we work with!

Here are the 5 mistakes homeowners make when they attempt DIY tree trimming that can lead to several tree problems. These are things that an experienced arborist from VA Tree Trimming will know, and that’s exactly why their services are worth the price!

Trimming Too Much

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

A big mistake homeowners make when trimming trees by themselves is cutting too much of the tree all at once. This occurs because they have 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 a lot easier to do this during a season that there are no leaves, but an experienced arborist will be able to safely trim trees any time of year.

Cutting at the Wrong Place

A certified arborist knows where to trim each limb to prevent damage. This cut should be made just beyond the branch collar, the specific place where the branch connects to the trunk.

Cutting too close to the branch collar exposes the tree to insects, decay and mildew. Cutting too far from it leaves an unsightly stump when the tree has recovered. Most DIY tree pruning results in an improper cut, leaving either aesthetic or structural issues.

Trimming Large Branches

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

Conservative trimming every year ensures that your tree trimmer only has to cut off branches that are 2-3 inches in diameter, which results in a more attractive shape for the tree and less risk of damaging the tree or exposing it to disease and pests.

Topping the Tree

Tree topping is an outdated type of pruning, and for good reason! During this service, arborists would just cut the top off of the tree to get the desired height. It was neither attractive nor was it beneficial for the tree, so the majority of arborists do not practice tree topping currently.

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

The Solution? Call VA Tree Trimming

Your tree may never recover from poor pruning.

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

Limbs don’t grow back. The tree will grow more, but it will not grow back in the same places, which leads to strange shapes that could require years to fix. The tree could end up looking bad for the remainder of its life, all because of just one trimming mistake.

Incorrect pruning could also result in death of the tree. Removing too many limbs (and, therefore, leaves) can affect the tree’s photosynthesis process, meaning it won’t get enough water or enough sunlight and carbon dioxide to continue growing.

Cutting too many branches might also send the tree into a state of shock. Shock isn’t necessarily permanent, but it does take a lot of patience and care. Even with proper maintenance, a tree experiencing shock may still die.

Avoid all of these tree pruning mistakes and call VA Tree Trimming to speak with a tree care specialist in Virginia able to customize a plan to ensure your tree continues blossoming and looking beautiful for years to come!