In the summer, your landscape to-do list is always spilling onto another page. From mowing to watering, you’re busy enough!
But now that you spotted a precarious tree limb in your garden, you’re wondering if, perhaps, you should trim now…
Usually, it’s best to prune trees in the dormant season when they don’t have any leaves. But as with any rule, there are always exceptions. Discover what they are below.
You probably want to hold off on heavily pruning trees now–unless it’s a fruit tree or poses a safety risk. But removing a few small branches should be A-OK as you long as you do it the right way.
If you prune to excess in summer, next year, your trees may not be as full. Summer pruning takes away from the tree's total number of leaves, and fewer leaves mean less food flowing throughout the tree for next year's growth.
Plus, summer is prime time for pests and diseases. A tree with open pruning wounds may be extra vulnerable to certain diseases. That’s especially for oak trees! If possible, you should not prune oak trees at all during the summer to reduce the chance of oak wilt, which is a potentially fatal disease. If you must prune (usually for safety reasons), paint the pruning cuts to make them less attractive to oak wilt-carrying beetles.
Here’s when you can trim other trees in summer: