Practicing basic horticultural techniques, using the right tools along with proper timing for each plant species, is the key to effective pruning. Most plants don’t require a lot of pruning in order to be in good standing. But before taking sheers to your plants, you should have a clear understanding of what your goals are and how to prune. A few basic horticultural techniques can take your gardening to the next level! Here are 10 reasons to prune and what it can do for you garden!
1. Stop Circling and Girdling Roots
When plants are grown in containers or very compacted soils and restrictive sites, the roots begin to circle. Circling roots do not anchor the plant appropriately, and they can actually end up “choking” the plants. When planting new plants, prune the circling roots!
2. Remove Co-Dominant Leaders & Weakly Attached Branches
Improper pruning can contribute to trees producing co-dominant stems and weakly attached branches. Having co-dominant and weak branches can cause more damage by rubbing, crossing branches and causing breakage. These types of branches should be pruned when they’re young to prevent wounds, injury and unshapely trees.
3. Creates Special Effects
Plants can be pruned to create special aesthetic, architectural and environmental forms. You may be familiar horticultural special effects. Ever seen an bonsai tree? Pruning is used as a technique to control the shape, size and growth pattern of the trees.
4. Size Control
This can be especially important if you live in an area with restricted space. Gardeners living in urban and suburban areas almost always have to perform some pruning to keep trees and shrubs from out-growing the yard, garden, or container. Root-pruning is another technique that can help restrict the size of plants in containers.
5. Control Growth Direction and Shape
Plants that have grown out of balance with either the yard or their own growing pattern (such as stray and awkward branches) can be reshaped by pruning.
6. Encourage Flowering and Fruit
Pruning can produce fruit on branches, as well as encourage the growth of strong flower buds. Fruit trees can be lightly pruned in the summer which will provide better air circulation around the fruit. This results in less trouble with fruit diseases and the fruit ripens faster!
7. Remove Waterspouts and Suckers
Waterspouts and suckers are small plant growths at the base or crown of a tree. They are generally caused by improper pruning and damage. Prune them as they appear because they can weaken the plants. Removing them will reestablish good plant structure.
8. Adds Healthy and Structural Soundness
Sometimes branches can be damaged from strong storms, equipment, people and other animals and insects. Removing the damaged branches can enhance appearance, diminish hazards, and decrease the chances of your tree being infected with a disease or pest. You should prune whenever there is damage to your trees!
9. Open and Rejuvenate Older Plants
Pruning a growing shoot can stimulate new growth production. If you have an extremely shady yard or you’d like to have more sun reaching the area under a tree for plants or lawn, careful pruning can let in a little extra sunshine. Too much internal growth can often restrict air and increase pest problems!
10. Remove Potential Hazards
By pruning damaged branches you can remove the risk of damage to your property and to yourself. You should always be aware of potential hazardous developments!
Check out some of our other blog post information about pruning. Here are some posts you might find helpful!
If you need any kind of assistance with bigger tree projects please contact your local arborist! If you’re in the central Florida area, Contact us! We’ll help you with all of your tree care needs!