Yes, we still are in winter so most of our trees are still dormant but there is an occasional reason to tram or prune a tree regardless of the time of year. If your trees are looking a little shaggy or you are concerned for the safety of the tree or other items in your yard, here are 10 signs that it’s time to prune your trees.
#1. Deep cracks.
If you find more than two cracks in your tree’s bark, it may be a sign that the tree is sick or dying. Deep cracks in a treat need attention and ignoring these could cause rot, pests, and infection to spread. It’s best to hire a tree professional to inspect these types of trees.
#2. Crossed branches.
This definitely should be done as we get into spring but when a tree’s branches cross they can touch and rub against each other damaging the bark and exposing the interior of the tree. This can lead to decay. It’s important to trim away any branches that are crossing or touching each other.
#3. Straggly branches.
Untamed and wild branches that have reached the house, the road, or power lines should be trimmed away for safety reasons.
#4. Dead branches.
If you have a dead branch, especially one of the main branches of the tree, this can cause the rest of the tree to be damaged. When a tree has several main branches also called leader branches, they can compete with each other for dominance. By pruning these, you can keep the tree healthy and maintain the main branch.
#5. Broken branches.
If you see any branches or limbs that are barely hanging on by a thread, it could be hazardous if not addressed immediately.
#6. Branch density.
If the tree is so thick you cannot see through it, it may be time to thin it out or scale it back. The branches are more likely to catch the wind and uproot the tree during a windstorm if not thinned properly.
#7. Signs of tree cankers.
A tree canker could be sunken in or missing spot on the bark and this could be a sign of disease or decay that could rot the tree from the inside out.
#8. Inhibited tree growth.
Most trees grow upwards toward the sun but if trees don’t have the space to do that they may have heavy branches towards the bottom making them hazardous. These type of pruning cuts should be done by a professional to save the health and vitality of the tree.
If you’re looking to shape a tree into a specific shape, you’ll need to prune throughout the year.
#10. Rotting wood.
If you see excessive dead or rotting wood this could imply that the tree is dying and without pruning it could decay the rest of the tree, which means it will eventually need to be removed.