Your Ultimate Guide to Pruning: What You Need to Know

When trees are growing in the forest, they can play by their own rules. “Free range” trees can spread out their limbs and stretch their branches up high as they grow, sending weak, older branches to the floor of the forest.

However, trees on the streets and in your own backyard, don’t have this level of freedom – and there’s a good reason for that. While you likely want your trees to appear as natural as possible while growing tall and strong, you also want to ensure they don’t pose a safety risk at any point.

This is where pruning comes in.

While you might have heard the term pruning in the past, and even know that it has something to do with trimming your trees, learn more about exactly what pruning is, and how it’s done, here.

Pruning: Defined

The process of pruning is when you selectively remove the branches off of your tree. The ultimate goal of pruning is to remove any unwanted branches, while improving the structure of the tree to help and direct new and healthy growth.

What Benefits Does Pruning Offer?

According to experts, pruning is one of the absolute best things that you can do for the trees in your yard. When you properly prune your tree, you are making an investment in your tree’s long-term health, and helping ensure your property looks great, and is safe.

Some of the specific benefits offered by pruning include:

  • Get rid of damaged, broken or dead branches
  • Save your property from damage due to falling branches
  • Give the tree a great foundation for long-term health
  • Provide your tree with a polished, clean look that will help to elevate your entire landscape
  • Train your trees to grow how you want them to
  • Encourage new, healthy growth by removing old branches

Pruning Methods

The specific goal you have for a tree on your property is going to determine the tree trimming method that you use.

Some of the most common types of pruning that are done include:


  • Thinning: This is when limbs are removed back to the branch of origin. It’s a method that is used to free up a fuller canopy so that more sunlight is able to come through.
  • Cleaning: This is similar to “fine-tuning” your tree. A simple cut is made to clear out diseased, dead and any damaged limbs to help provide the tree a more polished appearance.
  • Reduction: This is when you make cuts that will help to reduce a tree’s width or height. Usually, this is a method that will help to shorten the branches that are too close to power lines.


If you need help with tree pruning for your property, the best thing you can do is call the professionals. They can ensure your trees are properly pruned for optimal health and appearance.