Trees may need pruning to maintain a particular shape, to remove diseased or dead branches, or to prevent them from touching power lines or rooftops. Pruning is also essential to promote fruit production and increase the value of timber. In fact, pruning is the most common tree care activity for landscape trees, but it should be done with caution. Improper pruning can result in tree damage or even death. When done properly, however, pruning can promote healthy tree growth and prevent tree hazards, such as falling branches.
Photosynthesis is the process by which trees manufacture energy for growth and maintenance. This process occurs in foliage, so pruning should be done carefully. Overpruning may inhibit a tree's ability to perform photosynthesis, thus limiting its ability to create foot and grow.
For more information on how to properly prune your trees, consult the publications below, or contact your local extension forester or arborist.
- Care of Newly Planted Trees, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Publication G94-1195-A.
- How to Prune Trees,USDA Forest Service Northeastern Area State and Private Forestry Publication NA-FR-01-95.
- Mature Tree Care, International Society of Arboriculture.
- Pruning Mature Trees, International Society of Arboricultre.
- Pruning Young Trees, International Society of Arboriculture.