Pruning remains something of a mysterious art for many homeowners, who choose to let their trees and bushes become overgrown and shaggy rather than risk damaging them. This strategy often backfires when the lack of pruning leads to a damaged or unhealthy tree. If you would like to arm yourself with some key information about successful pruning, read on. This article will outline three basic tips to get you started.
Make The Four Ds Your Guiding Principal
Those who want to take the guesswork out of pruning, take note. The most important thing to remember is what is commonly known as the Four Ds: Dead, Damaged, Diseased, Deranged. These are the four things you'll need to be most vigilant about attending to. Treat them in order.
In other words, begin by carefully removing any dead or damaged branches. This will instantly improve the appearance of the tree. Not only that, but it will also reduce the likelihood of further problems, since damaged areas tend to promote such issues as rot and disease.
Now move on to pruning any diseased portions. These branches will generally appear weak and discolored, though it pays to learn to recognize the signs of disease for the particular trees in your yard. While pruning diseased branches, it is wise to keep a mild bleach solution on hand, for disinfecting your pruning tools between cuts. This will keep you from inadvertently propagating the disease.
Lastly, remove any deranged branches. This term simply refers to those branches that don't keep with the tree's overall shape or appearance. This may include crossed, hooked, or poorly spaced branches.
Cane bushes should be pruned back 1/3 yearly.
Cane bushes are frequently utilized in landscaping residential yards. This category of bush includes species such as forsythia and hydrangea, which put forth new canes with each growing season. The general rule when pruning such bushes is to remove no more than one third of the canes each year. This number ensures the perfect compromise between an attractive appearance and the room needed for the bush to remain healthy.
Look for the collar when pruning branches.
The most crucial consideration when pruning tree branches is the location of your cut. Generally speaking, you do not want to leave behind a branch stub, since this will make the tree more susceptible to contracting a disease. The best location for removing a branch is the so-called collar. The collar can be recognized as the swollen bark ring near the base of the branch. Cut the branch as close to the collar as possible without removing it.
Talk with one of your local tree trimming services for more recommendations.