Tree Pruning-Mature Trees in the Spring

Tree pruning is a very important part of the process of horticulture. Pruning is also referred to as “suicide”, because it is a method of killing or preventing a tree from becoming sick by removing portions of its canopy or foliage. It can also be used to correct growth deficiencies or to correct tree alignment. Pruning can be done manually, by hand, or using pruning shears, or electric pruning shears. This article focuses on how to do manual pruning, as that is the most common practice.


Tree pruning, when performed properly, promotes healthy new growth and blooming of trees. In order to receive maximum benefit from tree pruning, it is important to remove dead, damaged, diseased, or otherwise inferior branches and blossoms. Thinning out weak or undesired portions of a tree’s canopy will allow for more growth and blooming. Removing mature and sick branches gives trees a chance to grow up and spread their new growth. However, if the branches are too thick, the new growth will be contained within the main trunk.


To perform tree pruning, cut branches that are producing no new growth, or are obstructing an existing drainage hole. Cut away branches that are mature and excessively thick, because they may block drainage. When performing the initial pruning, set the cutting blade close to the ground so that the pruning cuts take advantage of the support that exists underneath the cut. Make sure that when you are pruning branches that it is not too close or touching other branches for the same reason. You will also want to make sure that your pruning cuts are at least one to two feet above the level of the ground.