Branch Tip & General Pruning
There are many ways to cut back your plants and trees in order to help them grow back stronger and healthier in upcoming seasons. A few of the more popular methods include: pinching, tip pruning, and shearing. The method you use will change, depending on the species and size of your plants.
You can prune your plants any time. It’s important to remove broken, damaged, weak, or heavily shaded stems/branches as soon as you notice them. This will allow your plants and trees to use their energy for new growth instead of sustaining already broken parts of itself. It’s important to prune in such a way that trains your trees for future growth and fruition for the future.
If you are uncertain about how to prune trees, you can always contact a local arborist here in Melbourne, like us – Dynamic Arborist. We’ve compiled a few general guidelines for you on when and how to prune your trees.
You will want to avoid pruning during hot, dry weather. Waiting to see what parts of your tree have died due to water stress will help you not remove branches unnecessarily. Pruning at the end of a growing season is a good time, when most of the seasonal growth is complete. It is also a good idea to start pruning when your trees are young to set a good foundation and structure, without creating gaping wounds once the tree is larger and more mature.
It also is important to remember that pruning is wounding a plant. Only remove live branches if it is for good reason.
As a general rule of thumb for pruning, you will want to follow the one third rule. Do not remove more than one third of the crown of your tree in any one-year span. This is especially the case for older, more mature trees. Also, when trimming branches (or thinning), you will want to cut the terminal branch back to a lateral branch that is one third of the diameter of the branch you are cutting.
Heading (or heading back) a plant is a way to move currently growing or one-year old shoots back to the nodes where buds form. Tip-pruning is one style of heading that involves cutting back the growing tip of a shoot to encourage side shoots or remove any damaged growth. This is important and formative for young plants, and will set them up for thriving and more tame growth in the future.
If any of these ideas seem foreign or hard-to-follow, we advise that you reach out to a local arborist for guidance or for them to offer-up pruning services for you. Here at Dynamic Arborist, we are highly trained and experienced in general pruning, and know a thing or two about how to maintain wild plants and care for them in a way that encourages healthy, manageable growth. Reach out with any inquiries – we are excited to work alongside you!