When should I prune my trees?

Periodically, trees need to be pruned of dead, crossing, broken, or damaged limbs. Low limbs or those encroaching onto your home might also be candidates for removal. Pruning can be done year-round if needed, but if you have the flexibility to wait, there are better times.

Late Winter
During the winter months trees are dormant and leafless making it easier to evaluate the structure of the tree and identify limbs that need to be pruned. Pruning should be done once the coldest part of the winter has past, but before bud break. Evergreen trees can also be pruned during late winter. Even though they still have needles, they also have slowed down processes for the winter.

After the new flush of growth from spring has sprung, summer is the second-best time to prune your trees. Knowing how the weight of the leaves affects the branches can be important, especially if you want to remove low or encroaching limbs.
Knowing WHEN to prune is just the beginning. Knowing HOW to prune is even more important. Making proper pruning cuts will ensure that your tree thrives to maturity. If you are interested in learning more about tree care and pruning, check out our TreeKeepers course offered twice a year.

Email Sarah Crowder at sarah.crowder@bridgingthegap.org to be notified when the next Treekeepers course is scheduled!