The act of pruning trees and shrubs benefits their growth, shape, and overall health during any time of the year. However, pruning during the winter is easily the smartest move you’ll ever make.
Trees and shrubs are usually dormant during winter, so it’s the best time to adjust their structure. Pruning during winter also helps prevent the spread of diseases amongst trees.
If you’re not pruning your trees, they’re not performing as good as they could be. Pruning not only makes them look better, but it also encourages flowering when the time is right.
Here’s what you should know about winter pruning:
Pruning Trees During Winter 101
Save pruning trees in winter for a mild, dry winter day. If the temperature drops below freezing, it’ll dry out your incisions.
Pruning involves removing dead, broken, diseased, and dying limbs or stems. It’s especially important to remove branches with snow/ice damage first. Learn how to recognize dead branches as well as dead trees so you can have a better idea of what your tree’s health is like.
Each tree has a time of year when you’ll get the most out of pruning. For example, it’s best to prune a Chaste tree during late winter. Research your tree’s species to determine at what point during winter you should start pruning.
Tree Trimming Tips
Try to cut branches at the node. The node is the part where one branch attaches to another. If necessary, cut branches from the collar of the trunk.
Regardless of whether you’re removing a branch or doing a crown trimming, cut the branch at a 45-degree angle.
Shrubs and Bushes
Winter pruning benefits flowering shrubs and bushes because it doesn’t interrupt their growth cycle. After all, most plant life has no leaves during winter to produce sugar.
It’s best to prune summer-blooming shrubs during the late winter. Evergreen shrubs should also have their lower branches removed during late winter as well.
Never prune too far or too close to a bud. Doing so will damage the bud and prevent future blossoming. There should be a 1/2 to 1/4-inch radius between the bud and the incision.
Once again, you should always cut at a 45-degree angle.
Cut the thickest overgrown branches before all others when trimming bushes. Never remove more than 1/3 of the shrub. It’s better to use hand pruners instead of larger shears when you trim bushes, especially Evergreen bushes.
Get In The Mood With Music
Consider listening to music for garden people or any other kind of music you like while you’re pruning. It’ll motivate you to complete the task and make it less dull.
Music makes almost any task more pleasant. Why not play some holiday tunes to keep your spirits up while pruning your trees/shrubs?
It’s The Most Wonderful Time of the Year
The earliest you can prune flowering or fruiting plants is late winter. Nonetheless, pruning trees is worth the improved growth they’ll experience later on.
At the very least, you should use winter as a time to inspect your trees. It’s easier to spot dead or diseased branches without full foliage.
Better yet, kick back and stay warm—check out our tree pruning service. We’ll make your trees look more beautiful than ever before.