Pruning a Shade Tree
- Loppers (long-handled pruners)
- Don't prune all the way back to the trunk. This will disfigure the tree and promote rapid, abnormal growth.
- Remove all dead/broken branches.
- Thin out any branches that seem to be interfering with each other.
- Prune any limbs that are hanging over the side of your house or are closer than 8 feet to your sidewalk.
- Hand Pruners - make sure they're sharp to avoid crushing the wood of the plant.
- Prune dead/broken branches.
- To determine if branch is dead, gently scrape the bark with your fingernail to reveal the color underneath. If it's green/white, it's alive. If it's brown/black, it's dead.
- Go about 6 inches into the live growth and cut with the hand pruners. Your cut should be angled, sloping away from the buds.