Do-it-Yourself Tree Trimming: Important Tips that You Must Keep in Mind

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Get to Know Your Local Trees

I'd always loved walking in forests and woodland areas, but I never really took the time to learn about the different species of tree — they all looked the same to me! That all changed when a relative gifted me a beautifully detailed book on local wildlife. From there, I was on a mission to learn all I could about trees, from oak to elm, beech to ash. I've set up this site to share my journey with you. Watch out for fun tree facts, tips on caring for trees on your property, and advice on tree planting and removal.


Do-it-Yourself Tree Trimming: Important Tips that You Must Keep in Mind

16 December 2016
 Categories: , Blog

Trees are an essential part of your home and you need to take good care of them to get the most of what is growing in your garden. Their benefits range from providing shade in the home to preventing soil erosion in your garden, using their roots to bind soil particles together. One way of keeping trees healthy is by trimming them to remove excess branches. This ensures that you get rid of any infected sections of the tree while allowing growth through the improved distribution of nutrients. Pruning is a manageable task that you can handle effectively with the following tips:

Examine the Branch Carefully

The first step is to look at the branch carefully so that you can understand its morphology and pattern of growth. Note that pruning is a delicate procedure that can leave wounds and dents on the stem and bark of the tree if proper care is not given during the process. You should take note of the branch collar and the branch ridge. Basically, the collar refers to a visible swollen section at the base of the branch. It is the point where the branch joins the truck of the tree or another parent branch. Its purpose is to provide mechanical support. On the other hand, the ridge refers to the angular inclination of the branch towards the trunk or parent branch.

Making the Cut

The cut is the most important stage when trimming branches from a tree. First, you should always make the cut from the outside of the angular ridge and away from the trunk or parent branch. You should end up with a gently sloping cut if you do it correctly. Secondly, keep the cut at least one inch away from the collar. This will reduce the possibility of damaging the truck or parent branch.

Identify the Weaklings

The essence of pruning a tree is to facilitate proper growth. This means that you should prioritise dead, infected or weak branches while leaving the healthy ones to keep going. At the same time, you should also pay attention to the spacing between the various branches. Keep the spacing even so that air can circulate well around the trees.


If you need to get rid of half the foliage on a certain branch, then it is better to cut off the whole branch. The objective is to minimise the number of cuts so that there are lesser chances of parasites and pests getting to the inner layers of the tree.