Does My Tree Need a Trimming or a Pruning? Is There a Difference?

Tree trimming is so much more than “just a little of the top and bottom, please.” You need to know where to trim and how much to take off. If you take off too much, you could damage and even kill the tree.

The same is true for pruning. 

Surely trimming your tree and pruning your tree are the same thing! Alas, they are not. There are slight differences between the two. The differences all add up to intent.

Why Do I Need to Trim My Trees?

Trimming is done to promote healthy growth and to make your tree more pleasing to the eye. We focus on removing new shoots and excess branches to maintain a symmetrical shape and manage the size of the tree.

It is also preventative maintenance. Trimming allows us to assess the tree’s health and take corrective steps if needed. Also, if regular trimming doesn’t happen, you could end up with a tree with a lot of problems.

On older trees, trimming takes on more importance. Especially if the tree has not been properly trimmed and maintained. Mature trees have more and thicker branches. These branches shade out a greater area of the tree, encouraging more shoots to grow. 

If you don’t keep on top of this new growth, the tree could end up with more branches than it can structurally support. 

What Time of Year Should I Trim My Trees?

Trees typically need trimming once a year, but it really depends on how fast the tree grows. Trees should be trimmed during their dormant stage. What is that, you might ask? It’s just a fancy way of saying when the tree is asleep and not actively growing. 

This period for both deciduous and evergreen trees starts in the autumn once all the leaves have fallen off the deciduous trees and ends in the spring.

As a rule, deciduous trees will need more frequent trimming than evergreen trees because they grow faster.

Why Do I Need to Prune My Trees?

Pruning can be a little more involved and is more focussed on the tree’s health. It removes the dead, dying, diseased, damaged, and problem branches.

What Time of Year Should I Prune My Trees?

The best time to prune your trees is also when they are dormant. But honestly, you need to prune when the tree needs to be pruned. 

You shouldn’t wait to prune a dead, diseased, damaged, or problem limb until the tree is dormant. If you do, you could end up with a bigger problem on your hands. That limb could fall off or negatively impact the tree’s overall health if you wait to prune. 

If your tree needs a trim or a prune, give us a call (250 – 650-1503). We’ll send our SUPERTREEOES over to get the job done right!

Learn more about when a tree needs pruning here and read our blog about the different types of pruning.

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