The winter months can be a great time to trim and shape trees, but you will want to make sure it’s done correctly. If not, your tree will lose valuable energy and may be susceptible to stress and disease. So here are our some tips for trimming fruiting and flowering trees in the winter that will keep them healthy!
Timing Is Everything
Correctly timing your tree pruning is essential for encouraging healthy growth. Although tree trimming can be accomplished year-round, one the best opportunities to trim trees in Denver is during the winter months. Here’s why: during the winter season trees go into a state called dormancy. During this time, trees naturally take a break and stop producing new growth.
Trimming during the wintertime will not cause the trees any stress and will encourage new growth come springtime.
Prevent Tree Disease With Proper Pruning
By trimming during dormancy, you can effectively avoid spreading Denver tree diseases that are active and spread easily during the spring and summer growing seasons.
The bacteria, fungi, parasites, and insects that cause and/or spread diseases such as Dutch elm disease, oak wilt, cedar hawthorn rust, and fire blight are either dead or dormant during winter. Therefore, these diseases are less likely to be transmitted by trimming and pruning.
Why Winter Pruning Spurs New Growth
When you think of new plant growth, spring and summer come to mind, but proper winter pruning can spur growth too. As the days lengthen in late winter, the sap begins to rise so any pruning done at this time will encourage strong new growth.
If you prefer not to do your own tree trimming, call an arborist or horticultural professional for advice and safe service. It is important to remember that although it may seem like a small task, winter pruning should be a top priority. You wouldn’t want to miss out on the opportunity before the weather changes again.
Effectively Pruning Your Fruit Trees
In order to take advantage of wintertime and encourage new growth in late spring/early summer, here are some tips on how to prune your trees effectively:
- Fruit trees can be trimmed up until about six weeks before they blossom.
- Be sure to use sharp pruning shears on all cuts as it will allow for easier healing.
- It also helps to cut branches back in a diagonal or “v” shape, which prevents the bark from splitting.
If you are looking for tips on how to prune flowering trees during wintertime, it’s important that you don’t remove too much of the plant at once. Wondering exactly how much should be trimmed off your fruit or flowering tree? A healthy rule of thumb is to remove no more than one-third of the tree’s canopy at a time.
Taking away too much can leave your trees looking like they received a bad haircut! More importantly, over-pruning can have other negative results such as the growth of water sprouts, sunscald damage, and the death of tree limbs.
According to a guide by the Colorado State University Extension, trimming fruiting and flowering trees annually is key to their ongoing health, growth, and productivity. Light and water are the keys to maximizing potential fruit yield. With proper annual trimming, you can control the tree structure, which in turn affects the tree’s light intake and crop load. In general, trees that go long periods without trimming usually produce very little growth and small fruit.
The Dangers of DIY Tree Trimming
Do you fancy yourself a DIY tree pruner? If so, don’t consider trimming your trees without first seeking out professional assistance.
It is possible to spread diseases by not knowing how and when it’s safe to prune. Trim too much of the bare wood away from trunks, branches, roots, and you open the door for disease and insects.
Before you take a stab at pruning your trees yourself, consider the benefits of professional tree trimming. Many homeowners trim their own trees in an attempt to save money. But when the job goes sideways, professional help is needed.
Is it worth the cost? The benefits are many: skilled arborists have the right equipment for the job; can prune without damaging branches and bark; know when to make cuts.
Hire Professional Arborists to Do the Pruning
Why hire a professional arborist to prune your fruit trees and flowering trees? Our certified arborists have years of experience caring for Denver trees. When you have no expertise with pruning a tree, it’s best not to attempt any heavy trimming since doing it improperly might result in serious harm.
When you want something done right, you call in the experts. There are certain things that we can do with our expertise and experience to make sure everything goes smoothly.
For example, we can avoid over-trimming or under pruning. Over-pruned trees become weakened because too much of their energy goes into leaf production over fruit. Over-pruned trees can take years to recover from this type of damage if they ever do. Likewise, under-pruning is just as detrimental for a tree’s health because it will result in bare lower limbs where disease and pests can easily enter the plant.
Proper pruning, on the other hand, encourages the growth of strong branches and leaves that support fruit.
Trimming fruit and flowering trees in the winter months is much easier when you have experienced arborists on your side. We can expertly identify limbs that need to be cut back, eliminating overgrowth and maintaining a strong structure. This will ensure proper airflow throughout the tree so fruits are protected from disease and pests all season long!
Give us a call today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation! Our team will visit to expertly inspect and diagnose your trees. Then we’ll work with you to craft a custom care plan that fits the needs of your unique trees.