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  • Writer's pictureRylee Parsons

Tree Crown Reductions: When and Why?

Updated: Feb 13, 2023

Why did the queen order her subjects to cut down all the trees in the kingdom?

She was jealous because they had bigger crowns than her.

WNC Tree Crown Reductions

As the wind picks up this fall and ice threats approach this winter, you may want to consider reducing the crown of the fuller trees on your property. A crown reduction removes weight from the end of branches to make them lateral again so that a new crown can form. This proper pruning technique maintains the structural integrity of mature trees while discarding any branches that are abnormally long or heavy.

Why Do a Crown Reduction?

A common reason property owners consider a crown reduction is to prevent damage to their property during wind or snow storms by taking excess weight and stress off their trees. This pruning practice prevents long and lateral cracks that weaken branches while improving the look of the tree by making it grow more symmetrically.

Taking action to reduce a tree's crown is not merely an act of selfishness, reducing a crown encourages growth in any tree. It also improves air circulation through the tree and reduces moisture to lessen its risk of fungal growth and prevent leaf wilting, crown rot, and root rot. For a tree already infected with fungal growth or pests, it will heal better after a crown reduction.

Which Trees to Target?

Relatively larger and older trees are likely to need more attention. Any tree with defects such as cracks or dead sections of bark has an increased risk of decay and removing weight off the top can take the stress off of those problem areas. Another characteristic of a tree that would warrant a crown reduction is branches with weak attachment points. Poor points of attachment to the trunk make branches more susceptible to fall in high winds or ice and snow.

When to Reduce?

The ideal time to prune a tree is always dependent on the tree's species and environment. Generally, the best time for a crown reduction is in a tree's late dormancy stages in early spring or late winter. Although, crown reduction is not uncommon during fall as property owners prepare for harsher weather. The time of year to avoid pruning is during the summer months when the tree is working hard to form fresh sprouts.

Once you've made the decision to save your property and your trees with crown reductions, give a professional a call as this job involves some serious tree climbing. While JC Property Professionals no longer specializes in tree service, we still maintain our "roots" by partnering with other companies to provide quality tree services such as crown reductions. Get in touch with us

today to prepare your trees for the wind and ice storms of the seasons.

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