5 Benefits of Pruning and Trimming Trees | TruGreen

5 Ways Pruning Can Benefit Your Trees

By TruGreen December 20, 2023
Homeowner pruning a tree

5 Benefits of Pruning Your Trees

Here’s a fun fact: Many trees can live for hundreds of years. In fact, the oldest-living tree (that we know of) clocks in at over 5,000 years old, per the Guinness World Records. That kind of longevity, especially without regular care, is exceedingly rare. Most trees — especially those that reside on homeowners’ properties — need a bit of help to stay healthy throughout the years. And one of the best things you can do to help ensure your trees stay in good condition is tree pruning*.

Pruning is the process of strategically trimming away old or dead parts of the tree (usually during the dormant season) to make room for new growth. And, if done right, this process can be incredibly beneficial — not just for your trees, but for the rest of your property, too. Here, we’ll explain why and break down some of the biggest benefits of tree trimming. Learn it all in our guide to tree pruning and trimming ahead.

Types of Tree Pruning

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, there are different types of tree pruning, and different approaches are recommended based on several factors (like the type of tree, the reason for pruning, and how old the tree is). Generally speaking, though, the most common types of tree pruning are crown raising, crown reduction, and crown thinning.

Crown raising involves cutting lower branches off to increase the tree’s minimum clearance. It’s usually done if the tree’s lower branches are obstructing something (like a walkway) or are too close to a property. The opposite of crown raising is crown reduction, in which some of the uppermost branches are pruned away to reduce the tree’s height and overall size. Finally, there’s crown thinning. This tree pruning process involves the strategic removal of specific branches to improve airflow and light penetration.

Why Pruning Trees Is Important

There are several reasons why careful pruning is a crucial aspect of tree care. Done correctly, it can improve tree health, make your outdoor living space safer, and even boost curb appeal — and that’s just for starters. Keep reading to learn more about the importance of tree trimming and pruning.

Pruning Helps Foster Healthy Trees

The best way to keep your trees healthy is by getting regular Tree & Shrub treatments with TruGreen®. We offer a range of services to help keep your trees healthy, including root zone fertilization, pest control and prevention, and disease control and prevention. Pruning, meanwhile, can be a great way to keep your trees healthy between those regularly-scheduled treatments. The reason: When done correctly, pruning helps encourage new growth. Strategically removing branches can also help improve airflow and increase light penetration. Plus, healthy, well-maintained trees are less susceptible to disease or pest damage. It’s a win-win.

Pruning Can Protect Your Property

Have you ever wondered why some trees fall apart during storms while others weather harsh conditions well? The tree’s age is a factor, as is location, but mostly, how well a tree can stand up to severe weather comes down to how healthy it is. Enter: Pruning. As we’ve established, pruning can help promote healthier trees. But it can also be a preventative measure. If you’re in a storm-prone area, preemptively removing weak or dying branches that could fall is a great way to protect your family and property from damage while helping the tree maintain a strong, healthy structure.

Trimmed Trees Are More Appealing

It may seem obvious, but oftentimes, tree pruning is done for aesthetic reasons. It’s almost like a haircut — just as your hair may start to look a little worse for wear if you go too long between trims, so can your trees. Pruning away dead or dying branches and trimming excessive growth (or growth in the wrong places) can help make your trees look better. And given that well-maintained trees and shrubs can boost your property value (by up to 19%, according to some estimates), it’s safe to say that regular upkeep is an investment that pays off.

What Time of Year Is Best To Prune Trees?

When you trim your trees is nearly as important as how you trim them: Do it at the wrong time, and you risk harming the tree. A good general rule of thumb for those wondering when to prune trees is to trim during the dormant season. This allows you to visualize the tree in its entirety and more accurately determine which branches need to be removed. Trimming during dormancy also helps promote wound closure. 

There are a few exceptions to this rule, however. Some trees, like pine, fur, and cedar, aka conifer species, can safely be pruned any time of year. Dead branches can also be removed anytime. For the average homeowner, this can be a lot to keep in mind. That’s why we recommend turning to an expert for your tree trimming and pruning needs — before you jump onto DIY-ing this, it’s important to understand that pruning incorrectly could cause irreversible harm to your trees.

Does Pruning Keep Your Trees Healthy?

Pruning is one critical aspect of proper tree maintenance, but it’s not the be-all, end-all. By that, we mean that there are other things you can (and should!) do to help keep your trees healthy throughout the seasons. We at TruGreen can help with that. Whether it’s root zone fertilization, pest control and prevention, or disease control, we’re here to help make your lawn a place the whole family can enjoy. Contact us today and learn what we can do to create an outdoor living space that you’ll love for years to come.




* TruGreen does not offer pruning services. Before pruning your landscape, consult a professional.  



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