Prepare Your Trees for Old Man Winter

Mid-to late fall is the perfect time for pruning. After the leaves have fallen, you can get a clear visual on where corrective pruning is needed. And, preparing your trees for the extreme weather of winter is important for the health of the tree and the safety of your property.

Winter storms are risky for trees that are not structurally sound. Trees with broken or rotting branches may not be able to hold up to the added weight of a heavy snowfall or a windy ice storm. Fall is the time to prune, cable and brace your trees…before Jack Frost makes his nasty appearance!

Pruning is the foundation for any successful tree care program. Search for cracked, lose and diseased limbs and cut them close to the trunk. Also look for branches that form narrow “V” crotches; these areas are weaker than those with wide-angle crotches. Remove the “V” branches by making a cut along the outside of the natural collar. Don’t cut flush with the trunk. The collar is usually detectable by ridges or wrinkles in the bark near the branch union.

Sculpting and pruning is an art form as much as it is a science. You’ll want to be sure the removal of the “V” crotch isn’t going to destroy the shape of your tree, creating an eyesore in your landscaping. If the beauty of the tree will be compromised we can create a permanent installation with cables and hooks. Screw-eye hooks are placed into the bark at a point two-thirds the distance between the crotch and the top of the branch needing support. A second hook is placed in the main trunk and a supporting cable is stretched between the two hooks. The hooks become buried in the bark as the tree grows around them and the process is not harmful to the tree.

If it looks like your trees require bracing, give us a call; this type of structural tree maintenance is best left to a professional arborist.

The seasons can change quickly in northern California and Nevada. Don’t take a chance that your trees will buckle under winter storm conditions, damaging your home, business, or worse…hurting someone! If you are unsure how much attention your trees need this fall, call us for an estimate. Joe Benigno’s Tree Service has the art of pruning down to a science.

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