Proper pruning enhances the beauty of almost any landscape tree and shrub, while improper pruning can ruin or greatly reduce its landscape potential. In most cases, it is better not to prune than to do it incorrectly. In nature, plants go years with little or no pruning, but man can ruin what nature has created. By using improper pruning methods healthy plants are often weakened or deformed.
Reasons for Trimming
- to train the plant
- to maintain plant health
- to improve the quality of flowers, fruit, foliage or stems
- to restrict growth
Pruning can actually be done at any time of the year; however, recommended times vary with different plants. Contrary to popular belief, pruning at the wrong time of the year does not kill plants, but continual improper pruning results in damaged or weakened plants.
HOW TO PERFORM?
- Break small dead branches off by hand as you climb. Remove larger branches with proper tools.
- Place hands and feet on separate limbs and move only one hand or foot at a time.
- Raise or lower tools by attaching hand lines to the end of tools. Tools attached at the centre might catch on branches. Smaller tools may be raised and lowered in a bucket attached to a hand line.
- Use non-conductive tools and personal protective equipment if working near electrical power lines.
- Be sure that you can see the cut you are making so you do not cut hand lines, safety ropes, etc. unintentionally.
- Attach a fibre or leather guard on saws that are held by a ring on worker’s belt.