Tree Trimming Mistakes to Avoid

tree pruning mistake

Tree trimming is best left to the pros. It’s a dangerous job, climbing trees, wielding chainsaws and lowering heavy branches to the ground; and it is sometimes dangerous for the tree as well. Trees that are improperly pruned can suffer from a lifetime of issues.

Rather than putting yourself in harm’s way and putting the tree at risk, enlist a professional who is trained and experienced to do the job for you.

This will result in stronger trees and a safer environment surrounding your landscaping for several reasons:

  • Healthy trees are stronger and not as likely to cause damage during storms
  • Cared for trees won’t attract or spread diseases and parasites
  • Trimmed trees produce more flowers or fruit
  • Trimmed trees create shade and allow air to flow throughout their canopies and your landscaping

SC Tree Trimming strongly encourages trimming trees that are very close to your house or any that are an integral part of your landscape.

Is Tree Trimming Necessary?

It is not required. But it is beneficial. Trees are very strong and can grow on their own everywhere in the world, in a variety of different climates and locations, without trimming.

That said, there are several benefits of tree pruning, so it’s recommended for any trees that you care about. This can include sentimental trees, fruit trees and blossoming trees or trees that perform an important service for your home, such as shade or home to wildlife.

Tree Pruning Gone Wrong

Tree pruning is a difficult project. You are going to need the right equipment and a lot of knowledge to ensure the job is done right. The vast majority of homeowners don’t have any of these!

But that’s alright, because there are a lot of services available who know exactly how to properly trim trees for an affordable price to you including all arborists in South Carolina we team up with!

Below are the 5 mistakes people make when they attempt DIY tree trimming that can lead to many tree problems. These are things that an experienced arborist from SC Tree Trimming will know, and that’s the reason why their services are worth paying for!

Trimming Too Much

When done correctly, tree pruning is a never-ending process. Starting when your trees are just 2 or 3 years old, they should be maintained by an expert if you care about them and intend to keep them healthy.

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

Removing Bark from the Tree

When you cut a tree branch and gravity starts to pull it down, it can rip bark from the tree trunk right along with it. This exposes the tree’s inner layers, putting the tree in danger of contracting diseases and making it easier for insects to find their way in.

To guarantee this doesn’t happen, an experienced arborist makes special cuts beneath big branches before making their final removal cut. Knowing exactly how to place these small cuts removes pressure from the branch collar and lowers the stress at the exact point of the main cut so the tree limb doesn’t tear.

Trimming in the Wrong Place

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

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

Pruning Big Branches

Branches any larger than 4 inches in diameter shouldn’t be trimmed unless it is necessary. Cutting off a branch this large can lead to imbalance in the tree and expose it to insects and rot as the tree recovers from losing such a big branch.

Conservative trimming annually guarantees 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 hurting 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! With this process, tree trimmers would cut the top off of the tree to achieve the desired height. It was not attractive nor beneficial for the tree, so the vast majority of tree care companies do not practice tree topping currently.

During DIY tree trimming, you may think this is a good way to lower the height of your tree with just one cut, but once you have cut the top of a tree off, there’s virtually no chance that it will ever return to a natural shape.

The Solution? Call SC Tree Trimming

Your tree may never recover from bad pruning.

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 really safer (and more economical in the long run) to hire a certified arborist in South Carolina from SC Tree Trimming.

Limbs will not grow back. The tree will grow more, but it will not grow back in the same places, which causes odd shapes that could require years to correct. The tree might look bad for the rest of its life, all because of a single trimming mistake.

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

Cutting too many branches can also send the tree into a state of shock. Shock isn’t always permanent, but it takes a great deal of patience and care. Even with the right care, a tree undergoing shock may still die.

Avoid all of these tree pruning mistakes and call SC Tree Trimming to speak with a tree care specialist in South Carolina able to devise a plan to ensure your tree continues to blossom and look beautiful for years to come!