Different Pruning Cuts You MUST Know

Tree pruning
Worker Pruning A Tree

What are the different pruning cuts that are essential for homeowners to know?

Pruning is a gardening exercise that requires the careful elimination of certain parts of a plant, such as branches, buds, or roots. The purpose of pruning is to promote plant health and vigor, as well as to improve the appearance of the plant.

There are many different types of pruning cuts that can be made, and the type of cut will depend on the plant species, the time of year, and the desired goal. To prune a tree, you will need a sharp pruning saw or shears, gloves, and a ladder if the tree is tall. Make sure the tree is healthy and free of diseases before you begin pruning. It is best to prune in the late winter or early spring when the tree is dormant.

There are several different pruning cuts that everybody must know:

1. Heading Cuts

When to use Heading cuts?
• Small branches – to decrease the number of buds the plant needs to feed and grow, making the chance of stronger flowers and fruit from the buds that remain.
• Large branches – to streamline a plant (a multi-year process).
 On all branches – to get rid of damaged, diseased, or dead wood. 

What are Heading Cuts?
Heading cuts means eliminating the growing tip of a branch. This releases the side buds to grow causing a denser growth at the point of pruning. It is also the removal of a large trunk/branch back to a smaller side branch when the side branch is smaller than one-third the size of the larger trunk being eliminated.

When making heading cuts, cut just above a leaf node (the point where leaves attach to the stem), angle the cut so that it slopes away from the bud that is facing outward. This will help the branch grow in the desired direction.

2. Thinning Cuts

What are Thinning Cuts?
Thinning cuts are made by cutting the branch all the way back to the trunk or main stem. Make sure to cut at a 45-degree angle so that water can drain off easily.

These remove entire branches and are used to reduce the overall size of the plant. Thinning cuts decrease the canopy thickness but usually have little effect on height. Thinning allows better light access into the canopy, which promotes desired growth of internal branches. This enhances trunk taper and improves the general vitality of the main branches and trunk.

Thinning cuts decrease the weight on large branches, providing the tree toughness to snow loading. The major use of thinning cuts is in the structural pruning of middle-aged trees, small trees, older trees, and shrubs.

3. Renewal Cuts

What are Renewal Cuts?
Renewal cuts are made by cutting the branch back to a point where there are three to five branches remaining. This will encourage new growth from the trunk or main stem. These remove large branches or stems all the way back to the trunk or main stem.

After you have made the cuts, remove any dead or diseased branches and leaves. These can be disposed of in the garbage. Place the cuttings in a compost bin if you have one. Water the tree well and mulch around the base of the tree to help retain moisture. Check the tree regularly for any new problems, such as pests or diseases.

Pruning trees can seem like a daunting task, but it is not that difficult once you know what to do. With a little practice, you must observe safety precautions when pruning your own tree. Right practice, you will be able to keep your trees healthy and looking great.

If you are still struggling to do the different types of pruning cuts, it is the sign to call for help from Tree Service Professionals. Contact Brooklyn Tree Service Pros­, NY if you want to know more about what the best cut for your tree is!

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