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The Importance Of Regularly Pruning Shrubs And Trees

If you have shrubs and/or trees in your garden, they will need to be pruned from time to time not only to keep them tidy but also to remove old or dead branches. Branches that have died off or become diseased need to be removed as this will keep the plant healthy and encourage new growth. Lots of plants can be pruned in spring before the new growth starts and this is a good time to do this because there may be damage that is not visible to the naked eye but could cause problems with the plant.

Much depends upon the species of shrub or tree that requires attention and you will find that each has its own individual requirements when it comes to pruning and shaping. A general rule of thumb is to cut approximately an inch above the new shoots. Cutting off old branches and leaving healthy shoots will encourage lots of new growth and gives the shrub the best chance of remaining healthy.
If you are trimming a hedge, you can create specific shapes so that the overall appearance has more depth and structure to it. You can easily include this in your regular trimming cycle and whilst you want to control the growth, you can to a degree, control the direction and angle that branches grow in. With regular trimming, your hedge will be ‘trained’ to your preferred design.

If you have larger shrubs or trees in your garden, if left uninhibited, these can grow to immense heights and this can be a problem not only for yourself, but also for your neighbours. It is important that regular pruning and trimming takes place so that the plant does not encroach into your neighbour’s property or your own home. Having branches smack your roof in high winds could cause a lot of damage to your slates or tiles and could cause power cuts, so it is actually very important that branches are kept clear of your home and power and phone lines.

It is not only your home that is at risk of large branches, your cars could also be damaged if you park them underneath the Pruning branch with secateurstrees or shrubs in your garden. Overhanging branches can be very attractive and offer good shade however, the drawbacks are that they can become diseased or damaged which could cause them to snap off. Another issue with overhanging branches is the residue that drips off the leaves. This can be from the plant itself or more likely from insects feeding on the leaves. This can be a problem to anything underneath the branches.
Shrubs and trees will grow as big as you let them and without regular care can become rather out of control. If left unchecked, this can cause major problems and is then a big job to get back under control, often requiring a professional tree surgeon to do the work. When you are planting trees and shrubs, think about how much it will grow over say, 10 years and think about what is around it. Choosing the right location for plants will ensure a happy outcome and also give you the opportunity to trim and prune as required.

It is important to follow the advice given regarding pruning and trimming for particular plants as this will give you the best chance of having a healthy plant. Trimming or pruning during the wrong time of year could actually kill the shrub, so make sure you familiarise yourself with the correct information to ensure safe and accurate pruning. As with all tools, make sure you look after your loppers, trimmers, shears, secateurs or whatever you are using to do the cutting. Keep them clean and sharp so that they cut cleanly.