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Tree Pruning Guidelines for Mature Trees

A number of factors must be considered when pruning mature trees.

These include: site, time of year, species, size, growth habit, vitality and maturity.

The amount of live tissues that should be removed depends on the tree size, species, and age, as well as the tree pruning objectives.

Younger trees tolerate the removal of a higher percentage of living tissue more than mature trees.

As a general rule, mature trees are less tolerant of severe tree pruning than juvenile trees.

Also, smaller cuts close faster and are more easily compartmentalized than large cuts.

Large, mature trees should require little routine tree pruning.

A widely-accepted rule of thumb is never to remove more than one-fourth of a tree’s leaf-bearing canopy. In a mature tree, tree pruning even that much could have negative effects.

Removing even a single, large-diameter limb can create a wound that the tree may not be able to close.

The older and larger a tree becomes, the less energy it has in reserve to close wounds and defend against decay or insect attack.

Further, the energy-producing capacity in relation to mass decreases as a tree matures.

The tree pruning of large, mature trees is usually limited to the removal of dead branches to reduce the severity of structural defects, or for ongoing utility pruning.

Got trees and need tree service in northern Spokane, Deer Park or surrounding areas? Call certified arborist Darren Palmer. Request your free estimate now.

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