It’s mid-December in Minnesota and we’ve just had our first major snow. While it may not feel like it, now is a good time to check winter tree care off of your to-do list. We recommend that our clients wait to prune until trees are in dormancy, which occurs between autumn (after the leaves fall from the tree) and spring (before buds start to appear). Tree care is a practice that will enhance the health, life and aesthetic of your home or business landscape. Let’s take a look at four benefits of winter pruning.
- Winter pruning helps get rid of loose limbs. Regardless of the weather we’ve had so far, we all know that big winter storm will soon arrive in Minnesota. Loose limbs should be removed beforehand to prevent added weight on unstable branches. That added weight can put you, your property and others in danger.
- Tree disease and insects are dormant. Many diseases and insects that can potentially invade trees don’t pose a threat during the winter. This means you can safely correct issues without (much) concern for insect and disease invasion. The risk of getting a disease or infestation after pruning also significantly goes down during the winter, as opposed to pruning outside of dormancy.
- Opportunity for increased visibility. Without those beautiful, lush leaves on the deciduous trees, it’s easier to see the limbs and branches that need to go. Focus on loose and dead limbs first, as these are the most likely to cause damage to your property during severe weather. Next, remove limbs to create balance throughout the crown of the tree.
- A chance to enjoy the outdoors. As Minnesotans, we like to gripe about the winter weather, but tree pruning is a good excuse to get outside, catch some sun and take care of your landscape. Plus, exercising (yes, tree care counts) during the winter burns more calories as your body works harder to control its core temperature. This will help counteract the extra calories you may be consuming during the holiday season.
It may be tempting to keep your ladder out from hanging lights and do your winter pruning, but if the limbs are at a height that is out of reach or in a risky spot (e.g. power lines), contact the certified arborists at Ostvig Tree Care. We’ll provide a free evaluation and handle the pruning, leaving your property better than we found it.