If you need a large tree pruned or many trees pruned, it is often best to hire a tree trimming company. But if you only need to prune a tree here and there, it is usually possible to do it yourself, if you so prefer. Over the years of pruning trees, you'll get better and better at it, and you'll likely be more pleased with your results. In the meantime, you may benefit from these pruning tips when you're just starting out.
Trim away the whole branch.
There are some shrubs that may tolerate you pruning away just the ends of branches, but for the most part, this is not healthy for trees or shrubs. When you cut off the end of the branch, you are removing the most vital tissue capable of the most growth. You should instead identify the branches you want to remove and then cut off each of those branches, leaving behind only a small nub.
Cut large branches with a three-cut approach.
Larger, thicker branches can be tough to get through in a single cut. To cut them cleanly and with minimal tearing, make three cuts. The first two should be right next to each other but positioned at an angle so they basically remove a wedge from the branch. The third cut should turn that wedge into a "Y" shape, cutting entirely through the branch.
Remove dead and diseased branches, first.
In general, you want to avoid removing more tree branches than necessary. You can do this by first removing the dead branches. Then, remove any branches that show signs of disease. If there is still ample growth left, then you can remove some healthy branches to reshape the tree. However, if your pruning session involves removing too many dead or diseased branches, then you should consider leaving all of the healthy branches intact until a later date. The tree will need them to make food and recover.
Use sanitary equipment.
Trees get diseases, too, and those diseases are generally spread by fungi and bacteria. To avoid spreading those fungi and bacteria, you want to make sure your equipment is clean. Dip your shears and other tools in bleach water, and repeat this before each tree.
With these simple but helpful tips, you can do a better job of trimming your trees. Remember, if you run into trouble, professional tree pruning services are only a phone call away.