Pruning, which is much more than a simple act of sawing off branches, is a horticultural practice. It alters the growth and form of a tree, and is also considered preventive maintenance, since by pruning (correctly) many tree problems may be prevented. Thus, it should be a regular part of a tree maintenance program.
According to the University of Minnesota Extension, there are many different reasons why you should prune your trees.
1. To promote plant health by:
- Removing dead or dying branches injured by disease, severe insect infestation, animals, or storms.
- Removing branches that rub together.
- Removing branch stubs.
2. To protect people and property by:
- Removing dead branches.
- Having hazardous trees taken down.
- Pruning out weak or narrow-angled branches that overhang homes, sidewalks and parking areas as these could injure people or damage properties.
- Eliminating branches that interfere with street lights, traffic signals, and overhead wires. However, remember not to attempt to prune near electrical and utility wires to avoid accidents. This should be done only by utility companies or by city maintenance workers.
- Pruning branches that obscure vision at intersections or the entry to your home.
3. To maintain trees, which is essential in landscapes.
4. To encourage flower and fruit development.
5. To maintaining a dense hedge.
6. To maintain a desired plant form or a special garden form.
7. To improve tree appearance.
8. To control tree shape and size.
9. To keep trees well-proportioned and dense.
10. To remove unwanted branches, suckers, waterspouts and undesirable fruiting structures.
11. To stimulate or restrict growth.
12. To improve aesthetics.
13. To save a storm-damaged tree.
Proper pruning of a tree encourages strong growth, improves plant health, and removes damaged limbs. Pruning should be done at the right time though and in the right way as this can be critical. If not properly done or done at the wrong time, it can kill even a healthy tree.
According to the Hamlin Tree Care, tree trimming and pruning, and other tree care services are not only for homeowners, but for commercial properties, landscape companies & general contractors too. Trees, whether in residential or business areas, are an important investment.