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Signs your tree needs pruning

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Alex, Staff Writer

Monday, 22 March 2021

Tree Pruning

What is tree pruning?

Tree pruning is when you remove certain branches from a tree in order to improve its structure, remove damaged or unwanted branches, and encourage strong and healthy growth.

Why is tree pruning important?

Trees can add character to a property and help improve the air quality of the environment. However, there comes a time when the tree may need pruning or cutting down completely if it poses a hazard to people on the ground or the property itself. 

Given trees can grow to gigantic heights and disrupt foundations, it’s best to get on top of such issues promptly as soon as you notice them.

5 signs that your tree needs pruning

The trunk is unstable or diseased

First and foremost, tree pruning needs to take place if the tree trunk is unhealthy or diseased.

A tree trunk can become unstable for a variety of reasons including storm damage, or a failed attempt at cutting it down yourself. Either way, the structure needs to be made stable as soon as possible, otherwise, it could damage your property, nearby cars or worse still fall on somebody.

Trees can also become diseased and the issue can spread to other nearby trees. If you’re not sure what you’re dealing with, have the tree inspected to see if it needs to come down or not. The issue may also need to be reported to the Forestry Commission so they can monitor the local spread. 

Misshapen Trees

Trees that are growing in the wrong direction can become a huge pain, as well as a clear sign that your tree needs pruning. If the branches are heading in the direction of your property or another vital structure, you need to take action. As well as the main trunk and branches, look out for tree roots that will naturally spread to absorb as much moisture as possible. If this happens, the roots could crack through the pavement causing an uneven surface for the public to walk on. 

The tree is crossing a boundary wall

You might adore your tree, but your neighbour is less likely to be thrilled if it’s now crossing onto their land. As well as branches reducing their usable outdoor space, the leaf fall that will be generated will cause an unwanted cleanup for your neighbour. If this sounds familiar to you, the good thing that a little bit of tree pruning can go a long way in reducing its height and spread. Make sure you keep in communication with your neighbour to let them know you’ll take care of the problem to maintain a good relationship.

Light into your home is being blocked

One of the key signs that you need to prune your tree is if it's starting to block the natural light from getting into your home. This is particularly true for trees that are very old and may have scaled to the point that they are now blocking light from entering your home. For north-facing properties, in particular, this can be quite problematic as they already have a reduced level of sunlight flooding into the home. The tree may not require a total removal, but tree pruning will go a long way to restoring an adequate light flow. 

It’s posing a danger to nearby traffic

Trees that line public roads or have the potential to block the view for oncoming traffic need to be closely monitored. Accidents can easily happen whether it’s from falling branches or an obscured view. There could even be legal consequences for failing to prune your trees, so be sure to keep up with the required maintenance if this applies to your land. If you're not sure how to carry out tree pruning yourself or you don't have the correct tree pruning tools, you can hire a local tree surgeon who will be able to carry out the work safely and efficiently.

How much does tree pruning cost?

If you're not a fan of heights then you may want to consider hiring a tree surgeon to carry out tree pruning for you. The cost of tree pruning will vary depending on a number of factors, including the size and condition of the tree, but we've calculated the average cost of tree pruning services in our handy price guide.

How often should tree pruning be done?

Pruning a tree should be carried out every 3-5 years for mature trees and 2-3 years for younger trees on average. Although this will vary depending on the overall health of the tree.

Tree Pruning

To sum up

Tree pruning can be a dangerous job, but one which needs to be undertaken from time to time. If you’ve noticed any of the above signs or if you have any general concerns, then it’s time to enlist the help of a professional tree surgeon to take care of things safely and swiftly.

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