Last chance to prune your deciduous trees!

Last chance to prune your deciduous trees!

Winter is on its way out, but it is not too late to prune your trees. 

Now is the best time for pruning most of your deciduous trees.  During the colder months the tree is dormant and has no leaves. This makes branch selection much easier when deciding where to make a correct cut.  The tree is also at less risk to infection during the colder months, as there are less insects to spread disease to open wounds.

Before you prune

  • Does the tree actually need to be pruned?  Ask yourself “what is it that I’m trying to achieve?”  The less you cut the better.
  • Poor pruning can cause damage that lasts for the life of the tree. Learn where and how to make the cuts before picking up the pruning tools. 

Prune your spring flowering trees such as oaks, willows, maples and beech trees.
It’s also beneficial for fruit trees such as apples and pears to be pruned before spring arrives.
Evergreens are also best pruned now to stem that fast spring growth.

Pruning tips

  • Always have a purpose in mind before making a cut. Each cut has the potential to change the growth of the tree. 
  • Small cuts do less damage to the tree than large cuts. Correcting issues when a tree is young will reduce the need for more drastic pruning later.
  • Do not remove more than 25% of the overall foliage in one prune.  If this is necessary, it should be done over several years, removing a smaller amount each time.
  • Do not ‘top’ your trees.  This will cause the tree to stress out and form many small shoots called epicormic growth.  These become weak and can fail as they get larger. You could even kill your tree.  
  • Cuts should be made to a secondary branch and this should be no smaller than 1/3 of the diameter of the main branch.
Deciduous tree thining optimises growth opportunity when spring growth starts.

Remember, trees do not heal the way people do. When a tree is wounded, it must grow over the damage. As a result, the wound is contained within the tree forever. 

If you are unsure about whether pruning is the right solution for your trees, call the Tree King experts for free advice!


“We have been working with Tree King for the last five years.  During this time we have found them efficient, co-operative and very safety conscience during any tree removal.  They are polite and professional to deal with.  We thoroughly recommend Tree King and its staff for a great job well done.”

Sampson & Stewart Builders Ltd

“Fantastic job on two large difficult trees to thin and shape. The 2 workers were very tidy, safe and pleasant. I will certainly use Tree King in the future.”

May 2019

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“Luke & team have been regularly maintaining our hedges for a couple of years. Great results, reliable & all round nice guys.”

April 2018

“Great job by the Tree King lads removing our enormous Washingtonian palm and tidying up the trees on our section. Arrived exactly on time, job was completed quickly and to a very high standard. Would definitely recommend them and will be using their services again in the future :)”

September 2018

“….This is the second time we have used them for tree cutting, crown lifting, shaping and hedge cutting on a large scale. They are very professional, courteous, on time, tidy and produce the service and results they said they would….”

November 2018

“…. I can not speak highly enough of the professionalism and efficiency of the crew. The tree work was not straight forward, however it was clear from the outset that the crew had taken the time to think through the logistics and details of the job…..”

November 2018

“Very happy, responded to query fast with quote, job was done very well and garden immaculately tidy afterwards. Definitely recommend.”

October 2018

“Great job as usual, polite guys, cleaned up well and left the place looking great.”

October 2018

“Excellent service polite staff. Arrived on time good cleanup on completion”

June 2019

“Fast workers – scheduled within a week of contact at my convenience. I liked how professional and automated the acceptance of the contract and invoicing was. All within a single email. Also attention paid to how much I wanted my trees trimmed. And although three trees were stumped – cleaned up well after themselves. They did such a good job, I won’t be needing them for a couple of years. But when I do – I know who to come back to!”

June 2019