Tree Trimming Mistakes to Avoid

tree pruning mistake

Tree trimming is best left to the pros. It’s a dangerous job, climbing high up trees, using chainsaws and dropping heavy branches to the ground; and it can be dangerous for the tree as well. Trees that are improperly pruned can experience a lifetime of problems.

Rather than putting yourself and putting the tree at risk, call an arborist who is knowledgeable and experienced to do the job for you.

This will result in healthier trees and a safer environment near your home for several reasons:

  • Healthier trees are sturdier and not as likely to cause damage during storms
  • Maintained trees don’t attract or spread diseases and parasites
  • Trimmed trees produce more flowers or fruit
  • Pruned trees provide shade and allow air to flow through their canopies and your property

MN Tree Trimming highly suggests pruning trees that are near your house or those that are an integral part of your property.

Is Tree Trimming Necessary?

It is not necessary. But it is beneficial. Trees are very strong and survive on their own everywhere in the world, in a variety of different climates and regions, without being pruned.

However, there are a lot of benefits of tree pruning, so it’s recommended for any trees that you care about. This can include sentimental trees, fruit trees and flowering trees or trees that perform an important job for your home, such as shade or home to wildlife.

Tree Pruning Gone Wrong

Pruning a tree is a complicated task. You are going to need the right equipment and a lot of information to ensure the job is done right. The majority of homeowners don’t have either of these!

But that’s not a problem, because there are plenty of services out there who know how to properly prune trees for an affordable price to you including all arborists throughout Minnesota we partner with!

Here are the 5 most common mistakes homeowners make when they attempt DIY tree trimming that can lead to many tree problems. These are things that a certified arborist from MN Tree Trimming will know, and that’s why their services are worth paying for!

Pruning Too Much

When done the right way, tree trimming is an ongoing process. Starting when your trees are only 2 or 3 years old, they should be maintained by an expert if you care about them and desire to keep them strong and healthy.

A big mistake homeowners often make when trimming trees themselves is cutting too much of the tree all at once. This happens because they have let the tree’s growth get out of control and try to fix it all immediately. Ideally, you should not cut off more than 5-20% of the tree’s crown at a time. It is much easier to do this during a time of year that the leaves are off, but an experienced arborist is able to properly trim trees any time of year.

Removing Bark from the Tree

After you cut a tree branch and gravity starts pulling it down, it can rip bark from the trunk right along with it. This exposes the tree’s inner layers, leaving the tree in danger of contracting diseases and making it easier for pests and rodents to scurry their way in.

To ensure this doesn’t happen, an experienced arborist will make special cuts beneath larger branches before making their final removal cut. Knowing how to place these initial cuts takes pressure off the branch collar and limits the stress at the exact point of the main cut so the tree limb doesn’t tear.

Pruning in the Wrong Place

A certified tree specialist knows where to trim each limb to prevent damage. This cut should occur just beyond the branch collar, the exact place where the branch connects to the tree trunk.

Cutting too close to the branch collar exposes the tree to decay, mildew and pests. Cutting too far from it leaves a stump when the tree recovers. Most DIY tree trimming leads to an improper cut, leaving either aesthetic or structural damage.

Pruning Big Branches

Branches any larger than 4 inches in diameter really shouldn’t be trimmed unless it is absolutely necessary. Cutting off a branch this large can lead to imbalance in the tree and expose it to insects and decay 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 produces a more attractive shape for the tree and less chance of damaging the tree or exposing it to decay and pests.

Topping the Tree

Tree topping is no longer a type of pruning, and for good reason! During this service, tree trimming companies would cut the top off of the tree to get the desired height. It was neither attractive nor beneficial for the tree, so the vast majority of arborists do not practice tree topping currently.

As a DIY tree pruning, you may think this is an easy way to lower the height of your tree with just a single cut, but once you have cut the top of a tree off, there’s virtually no chance it will ever return to a natural shape.

The Solution? Call MN Tree Trimming

Here’s the truth. Your tree may never recover from poor trimming.

Performing this project yourself might seem like a way to save a little money, but you could end up with way more expenses trying to revive damaged trees, so it’s a lot safer (and more economical in the long run) to hire a certified arborist in Minnesota from MN Tree Trimming.

Limbs will not grow back. The tree will grow more, but it will not grow back in the same places, which  causes strange shapes that could take years to correct. The tree could end up looking bad for the remainder of its life, all because of a single trimming error.

Bad pruning could also result in death of the tree. Removing too many limbs (and, therefore, leaves) can alter the tree’s photosynthesis process, which means it won’t get all of the water it needs or enough carbon dioxide and sunlight to continue healthy growth.

Cutting off too many branches might also send the tree into a state of shock. Shock can be overcome, but it does take a lot of care and patience. Even with the right care, a tree experiencing shock may still die.

Avoid all of these tree pruning mistakes and call MN Tree Trimming to speak with a tree care specialist in Minnesota able to come up with a long-term plan to ensure your tree continues to blossom and look beautiful for years to come!