All pruning by Arbor Care is performed to achieve specified objectives and complies with ANSI A300 standards. No more than ¼ of the crown mass of larger trees will be pruned in a season. Ideally, a pruned tree should have branches distributed throughout the upper ⅔ of the crown. The ultimate objective in any pruning is proper health and structure of the tree. Tree spikes, or special spurs strapped to a climber’s legs to assist in climbing, are only used for tree removals and never for pruning.

Arbor Care does perform removals and pruning all through the winter. All oaks and American elms are pruned during dormancy to avoid the overland spread of oak wilt and Dutch elm disease. Dead wood can be identified by the absence of live buds which are formed during the previous growing season. It may sound counterintuitive, but a good Arborist can identify dead wood better in the winter when the leaves are not in the way.

The various types of pruning we perform include:

Tree Trunk

Hazard Reduction: The primary objective is to reduce the danger to a specific target caused by visibly defined hazards in a tree.

Maintenance: The primary objective is to maintain or improve the health and structure of the tree, and includes hazard reduction pruning.

Training: The removal of selected branches in young trees to establish a central leader. This may require multiple seasons on larger young trees.

Thinning: The removal of some interior branches and the reduction of some upper crown branches to improve airflow and increase filtered light.

Crown Raising: The removal of lower branches to allow for vehicular or pedestrian traffic, buildings and power lines. Standard clearances are 10’ over sidewalks and roofs and 15’ over streets.

Crown Cleaning: The removal of dead and/or broken branches. Industry standards specify that deadwood 2” in diameter and larger be removed. We remove deadwood 1” in diameter and larger as well as smaller dead twigs within our path.

Reduction Cut: The removal of a terminal branch back to a lateral branch at least ⅓ its size.

Crown Restoration: Usually includes all of the above, and is performed on neglected, damaged or previously topped trees. The objective is to re-establish proper crown structure. This usually takes multiple seasons if there are significant corrections to make.

Vista Pruning: The removal of branches from one or several trees to obtain a view.

Please Note: Topping, or removing the entire crown back to large stubs, is not an accepted practice and is never performed by Arbor Care.