If you want to know about pruning your shrubs, hedges, or trees, this is the blog for you. We will be discussing what pruning is, why you should do it, how you can do it safely, and more. Stick with us, and soon you’ll feel like you have a Ph.D. in pruning. Unfortunately, we cannot award diplomas without formal testing, but feel free to test out your skills on your landscape! If you still don’t feel confident enough to complete the task, the Marathon team will be happy to assist you with all your pruning and landscaping needs. Now, let’s dive into your coursework!
What is pruning?
Pruning, in general, is the process of removing the excess and unwanted things that block growth. It brings value to almost any aspect of your life. We have all seen growth in certain areas of our personal life when we “cut the fat” to make time for the things that really matter to us. So we can agree that the process of pruning is valuable in our lives.
Specifically, pruning your plant life has immense benefits for your entire landscape. You can prune trees, shrubs, or hedges by cutting away the plant’s diseased branches or dead portions. You can use pruning to thin out a plant and give it a better shape. It can also be used to train the shrub, hedge, or tree to grow in a certain way. You can also raise the canopy of a tree by pruning away the lower branches that might be interfering with your walkways or landscape in some way.
What are the benefits of pruning?
Are you wondering why you should even take the time to prune? There are many benefits to consider. Some of them include:
- It adds style and increases the curb appeal of your property.
- Pruning deters animals and pests from taking up residence in your plant life.
- It improves the health of your shrubs, hedges, and trees. By removing the dying or diseased branches, the spread of damage is prevented. This process helps fruits and flowers grow better because the remaining branches do not have to compete for nutrients, air, and water.
- Pruning protects your property from damage. Loose branches that could fly off and cause damage during a storm can be removed before becoming a problem.
What are some tips for pruning?
While you should research the species of plant that you plan to prune, there are some general tips to follow:
- In general, experts recommend pruning in the early spring or later part of fall. However, some species require pruning as soon as flowers die off to stimulate growth.
- You can use hand pruners, long shears, or a hedge trimmer, depending on the type of plant you have or your experience with the tool.
- Changing the angle of your cuts can change how the branches grow. Look at the direction each branch is growing in and decide if you want to keep the angle or change it. This will dictate how you cut the specific branch.
- While some plants, like rose bushes, require vigorous pruning for growth, others require minimal pruning. Ornamental shrubs, for example, require the diseased branches to be removed for healthy growth to continue.
- Ensure you take the time to assess all the plants on your landscape and research their individual pruning needs.
How do I safely prune plants on my property?
Staying safe is a priority with any sort of outdoor maintenance. First of all, NEVER trim any branches that are within a few feet of power lines.
This is very dangerous! Even for small pruning jobs, personal protective equipment (PPE) is required. If you plan on regularly pruning the plants on your property, invest in some safety goggles or glasses. Make sure they have side shields to prevent small branches and debris from hurting your eyes. A hard hat and gloves are also recommended. If you are trimming larger, heavier branches, consider purchasing steel-toed boots as well. When trimming, wearing a long sleeve shirt and pants instead of shorts can protect your limbs from scratches.
Call the professionals or DIY?
Consider the cost of the project. When you consider purchasing all the necessary tools, along with the required personal protective equipment, pruning can become a costly venture. It will save you money in the long run, but this is only if you plan on consistently tackling the pruning yourself. Your time is also valuable. You must weigh the benefits of taking time from work or losing free time to get your pruning done. Remember that if you damage your plants, more time and money may have to be spent to correct the mistakes.
Professionals also understand the proper safety protocols for pruning. Especially if there is ladder work involved, or you are not used to using pruning tools, you may want to consider hiring someone to avoid the risk of injury.
Experts also get quality results. If you want the best results for your property, it may take you some time to get them. It takes a while to understand how your plants grow and learn what directions to cut the branches for optimal growth. Like everything else, this requires a learning curve. It may take a little bit of trial and error before you get the hang of it. If you want immediate, high-quality results, hiring someone may be the best choice for your property.
Marathon Lawn Care is proud to provide superior outdoor services for residents in the Austin TX area, and we also serve North Austin, Cedar Park, and Leander. Also, we serve these communities within these regions:
- Cat Hollow
- Scofield Farms
- Wells Branch
- Anderson Mill West
- Village at Anderson Mill
- Mesa Park
- Rattan Creek
- Hunters Chase
- Old Millwood
If you have any questions about our pruning or other outdoor maintenance services, feel free to reach out to us online or by phone today! Our customer service representatives will be happy to help.