Pruning is probably one of the most deceptive procedures that most people think is simple and uncomplicated. How hard could it be, right? You take your pruning shear and start cutting the branches off. It’s not like you need some crazy precision to get the job done, or do you?
Pruning is technically the only method that allows you to take control of the way your flowers or trees develop. It allows you to take care of your tree’s growth, nurture its health, and also manipulate the posture/structure of the tree.
You should remember that every branch removed during the pruning process serves a crucial purpose. In brief, no branch is removed without a certain objective. Any professional Sydney Tree Arborist will tell you that there are certain things you should definitely not do while pruning.
Tree topping is a classic example of people just using their pruning shear or chainsaw to remove the tree branches just for the sake of it. Normally pruning includes the removal of some strategic branches to help the tree grow better and healthier as well. Tree topping produces the complete contradictory result. As opposed to improving the health of the tree, topping causes long-term damage to the tree, possibly eliminating its capacity to ever grow back again.
Tree topping is the process of removing every branch from the tree, leaving just the primary structure of the tree. This type of pruning method will most probably destroy the tree’s ability to regenerate and grow back to its full potential again. Basically, it results in slow decaying death of the tree, which is something of serious concern.
Tree topping should be on your top list of things you should definitely NOT do.
Why are You Pruning?
The primary purpose of pruning differs as per different tree stages. For instance, during the initial stages of the tree (5 years), pruning is done predominantly to ensure the ideal structure. This helps the tree to grow in the most robust structure as they continue to develop. Such pruning also ensures uniform spacing between the branches and also establishes a sturdy link between the main trunk and the branches.
Now, as the tree attains a more stable structure or its adult stage, pruning is no longer about ensuring a good structure. Instead, the objective of pruning shifts to the removal of some specific branches.
The primary purpose of pruning involves eliminating the four Ds –
- Dead branches
- Diseased branches
- Deranged branches and
- Damaged branches
All these types of branches can severely hinder the health and the growth of the tree as well. In the majority of the cases, apart from just hindering the growth of the tree, such branches can be of danger even to humans.
Dead branches of large trees are always at the risk of falling off even with the slightest of disturbance. Any mild wind can cause the dead branch to fall down, risking the life of any person below. It is, therefore, essential to always remove the dead branches first.
Diseased branches if not removed at the appropriate time, can spread the infection to other branches as well, compromising the health and growth of the entire tree.
Deranged braches are those that grow out-of-order and prevents the nearby branches from growing. Deranged branches can be identified from their “crossing” or overlap structure. They usually branch out right on top of the other branches preventing them from growing further. These braches also grow towards the main trunk creating a crossing-like structure.
Damaged branches are those that are caused by external factors such as lightning or improper cutting. Such branches should also be removed as they can disturb other nearby branches or even cause infection as they are prone to attract external foreign insects.