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Almost everyone who has trees in their yards has heard of tree pruning or tree trimming, especially in the case of fruit trees. Trees have limbs or branches cut for many reasons.

Damaged or diseased branches obviously need to be removed, but there are other reasons for trimming as well. These include thinning the branches to promote the growth of fewer, stronger branches, allowing sunlight to reach inside blooming and fruit-bearing branches, and preventing problems such as branches rubbing together. But is there a difference between tree pruning and trimming?

If you believe your trees need a trim or a checkup, Hampton Tree Pruning Service can look over your trees and recommend needed care.

Tree Pruning and Trimming tools

What is the Difference Between Tree Pruning and Tree Trimming?

Tree trimming is generally focused on the look and shape of the tree. It involves mostly thinning out unwanted branches or branches growing in an awkward way. They are trimmed to make a pleasing shape and to encourage the tree to grow in that shape. While also enhancing the looks of a tree, pruning is focused more on the health of the tree. Strong, healthy growth is the goal here.

Tree Pruning Explained

Tree pruning helps protect the tree from harm from insects and disease. Getting rid of broken, dead or diseased branches helps keep any disease from spreading through the tree. In addition, some branches may have been cracked due to wind or a heavy load, which may not be readily visible if the branch is not severely bent or obviously broken. These limbs need to be removed to prevent openings for insects and diseases to get in.

Other types of pruning include removing lower branches that gradually weaken as the tree grows. The tree will eventually shed these branches itself, producing a bare trunk, but sometimes it’s best to have them removed to prevent possible damage from a fallen branch and to keep the unneeded branch from using up nutrients. Branches that rub against each other eventually produce open wounds, which also provide a doorway for unwanted things.

With fruit trees, pruning is doubly important. Fruit trees need to have uncrowded space throughout the tree to allow sufficient sunlight to reach through it and optimize fruit production. A fruit tree that is too crowded with branches in the middle may only produce fruit on the outer part of the tree. In addition, there are many diseases that require pruning. Fungal infections, especially, require pruning, as there is no real cure for these diseases once they take hold. Prevention is possible, but if the infection manifests, there is no treatment. The only solution is to properly cut and dispose of affected parts, promptly burning them to prevent spread.

Pruning is done usually during the dormant season, except in the case of obvious damage or visible disease. Trees should be examined to see if anything needs to be pruned. This is easier to do when the leaves are down, but optimum pruning time depends on the type of tree.

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What is the Purpose of Tree Trimming?

Branches can grow in strange directions. Sometimes there will be a branch that is very long but very thin, which can lead to breakage and cause it to twist around other branches or rub against them. Too many branches can prevent leaves from getting sufficient sunlight. This is especially important to watch for with fruit trees, as they need more sun than trees that produce only foliage.

Young trees especially need to be encouraged to grow a center trunk, as having two or more main trunks can lead to weakness and the loss of one later in life. Suckers growing from the trunk or the root system can sap nutrients from the main tree and need to be removed. A tree with good lower branches doesn’t need a few weak suckers poking out from the trunk. Trimming is done usually once a year. It’s usually done when the tree is dormant, but this varies with the species.

Is the Cost for Both the Same?

The cost is usually based on the size of the tree and the number and placement of removals involved in both cases. When disease or insects are involved, it may affect the cost as well. A small tree can average $80, while a full-grown tree can range from $250 to $1,000 for the job. Removing large branches or trimming a tall tree may necessitate the use of a bucket truck, which adds to the cost.

If you believe your trees need a trim or a checkup, Hampton Tree Pruning Service can look over your trees and recommend needed care. Contact us at https://mypatriottreeservice.com/tree-trimming/ and we’ll be glad to come out and advise you on what your trees need to keep looking their best and stay healthy.

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