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Old 09-11-2008, 12:53 PM
 
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I want to trim the trees in my property. When is the best time to do it, spring or fall? Thank you,
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Old 09-11-2008, 01:30 PM
 
Location: Newport, NC
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Depends on the kind of tree, maples for example, will bleed if pruned in the spring. As a general rule, you can prune trees any time they're dormant.
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:38 PM
 
Location: Albemarle, NC
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I always do any heavy pruning in the dead of winter. Light pruning, I usually wait until I see the first leaf buds starting to open and there's no chance of frost. Flowering trees, wait until they've bloomed but not too long. Most trees flower on last years growth, crape myrtles excluded.
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Old 09-11-2008, 11:31 PM
 
Location: Mishawaka, IN
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It's best to prune hardwoods in the dormant season. It helps heal the wounds during the growing season.

Conifers you can prune any time of the year but again, the dormant season is better.

Flowering trees that bloom early, prune right after flowering.

Trees that flower in the summer or fall, prune during the dormant season.

Certain types of flowering trees can fall prey to a disease called fireblight. Quite a few types of Crabapple and Pear trees are among these. There are some others as well but I can't think of them at the moment.

Also, don't just go in hacking away or anything. There's a proper way to prune trees and if you're not careful, you can damage them. You don't want to cut too close to the trunk but you also don't want to leave stubs.

Don't remove too much at one time. Trees take time to recover from pruning and too much can overwhelm it. If you're removing growth from the crown(Thinning), don't remove more than 25% of it's foliage. If you want to remove lower branches for clearance(Raising the crown), don't remove more than 33% of the tree's overall height. If it's ~30' tall, don't prune higher than 10'.

Oops, I forgot. You can prune dead branches any time.

Last edited by DLK55; 09-11-2008 at 11:33 PM.. Reason: Omission
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Old 09-12-2008, 08:16 AM
 
Location: NE Florida
17,833 posts, read 31,588,083 times
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There is a great article from the U of FL IAFS extension office on trimming trees
It even has drawings on the right and wrong way

http://urbanforestry.ifas.ufl.edu/Pu...d%20Shrubs.pdf
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Old 09-12-2008, 06:37 PM
 
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Reps to all of you for being so helpful, and thank you!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 09-12-2008, 07:02 PM
 
Location: Out there somewhere...a traveling man.
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Rule of thumb, trim decidous trees in the winter months during their dormancy period, trim evergreen trees in spring.
Karlas pruning information is universal and has great information on proper pruning. Too many people masacre their trees by improper pruning.
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Old 09-13-2008, 03:10 PM
 
Location: WA
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Anytime you prune, but especially if the tree is not dormant, use a clean (disinfected if possible) tool. It is easy to spread disease using dirty sheers.
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