The best time to prune a tree falls into one or two time windows. Most trees are pruned during late winter, although there are some flowering trees that are pruned in late spring as soon as they are done flowering. Summer pruning is typically avoided, but it can be done if necessary.
There are a few reasons why summer pruning is typically avoided. For trees grown for fruit or flower, pruning too late in the growing season can reduce the number of blossoms next year since these are set soon after flowering stops in spring. Without these buds, you may end up with a lot of foliage but few flowers or fruit.
A concern that affects all trees is the increased chances of a disease or pest infestation since these pathogens are at full force during the warm summer months. They can quickly infest a tree through the pruning wounds on the trunk. A tree is also more likely to produce heavy sap from a pruning cut during the summer, which can further attract certain pests and fungal diseases.
Reasons to Trim
Although summer is not ideal, there are plenty of reasons why a tree may require trimming at this time. Storm damage is the most likely culprit. Branches that are badly damaged in a storm can pose a hazard to anyone standing below. It's necessary to have these branches trimmed away before they break on their own since they could hurt someone, cause property damage, or further damage the tree as they come down.
Disease and natural dieback may be another reason to prune out of season. If a disease is spreading through branches, sometimes pruning off the affected wood can halt the disease and save the tree. Branches may also die of natural causes, but they need to be removed before they break off on their own.
If a tree must be pruned in summer, then great care is needed. Only those branches that pose a risk to safety or the tree's health should be removed — there is no reason for a full pruning.
Every tool used must be cleaned and sanitized between cuts to ensure that no disease pathogens are spread around. Your tree service will strive to make clean cuts that will seal up quickly. If a particular pest or disease is a high risk in your area, they may also treat the wound to protect it from problems.
Contact a tree pruning service if your trees need a trim outside of the normal winter pruning period.
I have always been one of those people who isn't afraid to get their hands dirty, which is why I started trimming my own trees. However, after doing it by myself for a few years, I realized that my yard was starting to look a little DIY, which wasn't the look that I was going for. To make things right, I decided to invest in a professional tree service who could come out and fix up my yard. They were amazing to work with, and they even came with all of their own equipment. This blog is all about the benefits of professional tree care, versus doing things on your own.