The warm, sunny days of spring and summer are behind us, and cooler days are here. Seeing the beautiful leaves from summer change color and fall off the trees is one great thing about fall, and those leaves falling is a good reminder that fall and winter are the best times of the year for tree trimming and shrub pruning. You may have heard this before and wondered why, so today we discuss why late fall and winter are the best times for trimming and pruning.
What Makes Fall and Winter the Best Times for Tree Trimming and Pruning
As everyone knows, deciduous trees lose their leaves in the winter, revealing all of the branches previously hidden under the foliage. Seeing the beautiful, colorful leaves fall off might make some people sad. However, bare tree branches do make the task of diagnosing issues and trimming trees much more manageable. In addition, the bare canopies of the trees make the tree structure much easier to see. As a result, arborists can more easily remove dead or vulnerable branches.
The frozen, snow-covered ground also helps arborists by allowing us to reach areas near the tree or shrubs that are usually inaccessible with our equipment. As much as we love leaves in the spring and early summer, having them out of the way makes our trimming and pruning easier. In addition, when the ground is frozen the equipment is less likely to compact the soil near the trees and shrubs.
Promoting Tree and Shrub Health
Trees and shrubs are dormant during winter, which halts growth until the following spring growing season. This inactivity means that wounds from trimming and pruning during late fall and winter will heal more quickly since the tree is not expending energy on new growth.
Another reason that fall and winter are the best times for tree trimming and shrub pruning is because disease and insect damage are less likely. Trimming and pruning during the late spring and summer can expose the trees and shrubs to diseases. When decay occurs, the decay attracts insects to the tree and causes more damage.
Knowing your area’s trees, shrubs, insects, and diseases can be very helpful. A certified arborist or other tree specialist can advise you on the best practices for your space and your specific trees. Trimming and pruning in late winter, when insects are the least active, will help keep your trees and shrubs healthy.
Special Tree Trimming and Pruning Concerns
Though late fall and winter through early spring are generally the best times for tree trimming, some exceptions apply.
As we have mentioned in a previous article, spring flowering trees should be pruned after they have flowered. This practice allows for the most blooms in the following year. More blooms lead to better aesthetic appeal and also aid in pollination.
If a tree is damaged and at risk of falling or losing branches, a delay in action may lead to injury or property damage. Knowing what to look for is essential. Here is a short list of issues to look out for that could cause mean “now is the best time to prune” ANY time of year.
- Weak, damaged, broken, or diseased branches and shrubs
- Branches and shrubs hanging over or making contact with power lines, roofs, sheds, or other structures
- Trees that lean at dangerous angles
Contact Stein Tree for Quality Tree Trimming and Shrub Pruning Services
The fall and winter make for the best times for tree trimming and shrub pruning. However, whenever you need professional tree care, you can count on an experienced arborist from Stein Tree Service. Since 1983, Stein Tree Service has provided the residents of Delaware and Pennsylvania with tree services, including regular tree trimming, removal, and emergency services. For a free consultation, contact us today.
Stein has a permit to work in spotted lanternfly quarantine areas in Pennsylvania and Delaware. Tree Service Companies have to be trained in proper moving and disposal of materials to avoid spread of the spotted lanternfly and Stein has completed the training courses.
In the spring, destructive ash borer (EAB) adult beetles begin to emerge. These invasive pests can destroy your ash trees. Our specialists are certified to treat for EAP in Pennsylvania and Delaware. For A free consultation, contact us today.