How to Prune Evergreen Trees

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

Tips on how to prune evergreen trees for a healthy plant and best appearance.

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General Tips

Pruning evergreen trees is a necessary task to keep them healthy and looking their best. But, it’s important to know how to prune them correctly so you don’t damage the tree. In this article, we’ll give you some general tips on how to prune evergreen trees.

Assess the tree’s health

Before you start pruning, it’s important to assess the health of the tree. If the tree is suffering from a disease or infestation, it’s best to consult with a professional before pruning. Otherwise, you risk further damaging the tree or spreading the disease.

Look for dead, diseased, or dying branches

Cut these branches back to the trunk or to a strong lateral branch. diseased or dying branches can harbor insects and diseases that can harm your tree, so it’s important to remove them.

Prune out any shoots (also called “suckers”) that are growing from the base of the tree or from the roots. These suckers compete with the main tree for water and nutrients, and they can make your tree look messy.

Remove any crossing or rubbing branches. These branches can damage each other as they rub against each other, and they can leave your tree susceptible to disease.

Check for crossing, rubbing, or weak branches

When you are ready to prune your evergreen tree, the first place to start is with any branches that are crossing, rubbing, or weak. These branches can be removed without affecting the overall shape or health of the tree.

Next, you will want to remove any dead, diseased, or dying branches. These branches can be identified by their lack of new growth or by signs of disease such as discoloration, cankers, or fungus. It is important to remove these branches so that the diseases do not spread to healthy parts of the tree.

Finally, you will want to thin out the tree by removing some of the branches. This will help improve air circulation and allow more light to reach the inner parts of the tree. When thinning out your evergreen tree, be sure to make cuts at a 45-degree angle so that water does not collect on the cut surface.

The Right Time to Prune

Pruning is an important task when it comes to keeping your evergreen trees healthy and looking their best. But when is the right time to prune? Read on to find out.

Late winter or early spring

The best time to prune most evergreen trees and shrubs is late winter or early spring before new growth begins. This is the time when the plant is in its natural dormant state and can best heal from any pruning damage. It’s also easier to see the plant’s structure when it’s not covered in leaves.

Avoid pruning during the growing season

Most types of evergreen trees and shrubs are best pruned in late winter or very early spring, before new growth begins. That way, the cuts won’t remove energy that the plant would use for growing new leaves or needles. Avoid pruning during the growing season because the plant’s energy is devoted to forming new leaves, not to wound repair.

How to Prune

Evergreen trees are a common sight in many yards. They are relatively easy to care for and are very versatile. You can prune evergreen trees for a number of reasons. Maybe you want to shape them, or you need to remove dead or dying branches. Pruning can also help increase air circulation and light penetration, which can benefit the tree’s health. Whatever your reason for pruning, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Cut branches at the right angle

You should always cut branches at a 45-degree angle, just above an outward-facing bud. This will encourage the branch to grow in the direction you want it to. If you have to cut a branch back to the main trunk of the tree, make sure to cut it at a 45-degree angle as well.

Use the right tools

To properly prune your evergreen trees, make sure to have the proper tools on hand. You’ll need a pair of sharp shears for smaller branches, and a pruning saw for larger branches. It’s also a good idea to have a ladder on hand, so you can reach any higher branches.

When pruning, always be sure to make clean cuts at a 45-degree angle. This will help promote new growth and prevent disease. Make sure to remove any dead or diseased branches first, as these can spread illness to the rest of the tree.

Once you’ve removed all the unhealthy growth, you can start shaping the tree by pruning away any excess branches. When doing this, be sure to keep the tree’s natural shape in mind. You don’t want to end up with an uneven or lopsided tree!

Make sure cuts are clean

You can use a saw, loppers or shears to prune evergreen trees.

Start by removing any dead, diseased or damaged branches first. Then, focus on branches that are crossing or rubbing against each other. Next, prune branches that are growing toward the center of the tree, rather than outward. Finally, thin out the tree by removing some of the older branches near the base.

When making cuts, be sure to use clean tools and make clean cuts. Avoid tearing or bruising the bark as this can open up the tree to disease and pests.

After You Prune

Prune evergreen trees when they are young to ensure that they grow into the desired shape. Although you can prune evergreen trees at any time of the year, it is best to prune them in the late winter or early spring.

Remove all debris from the area

After you have pruned your evergreen tree, it is important to remove all debris from the area. This includes any leaves, twigs, or branches that you have cut off. This will help to prevent the spread of disease and pests, and it will also help your tree to heal quicker.

The best way to remove debris from the area is to use a garden hose with a high-pressure nozzle. Simply turn on the hose and blast away any debris that is on the ground or on the tree itself. You may also want to use a leaf blower to remove any heavy buildup of debris.

Apply a tree wound dressing (optional)

Apply a tree wound dressing if you are concerned about the health of your tree. Although a tree wound dressing is not necessary, it will help protect the tree from disease and insect pests. Tree wound dressings are available at most garden centers and hardware stores. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books