After your new tree has been properly planted, mulched, and watered, you should carefully inspect the tree and prune out any broken, dead, rubbing, or diseased branches. It’s important to develop a strong primary (scaffold) branching structure while the tree is still young. As they grow, these trees will possess a stronger branching framework that requires less corrective pruning maintenance and will be able to withstand wind, ice, or snow events.
The best time to prune your trees is during the dormant season after autumn leaf drop and before bud break in the spring. For information on how to properly prune your landscape trees, please download the following brochures:
How to Prune Trees (USDA Forest Service) – PDF
These brochures provide detailed information on why, when, and how to prune your landscape trees. In order to maintain strong, healthy, and attractive trees, follow pruning techniques discussed in these brochures.
- If pruning cannot be accomplished safely from the ground, please call an ISA-Certified Arborist.
- When pruning your trees, do not create “lion tails” that result from removing the inner branches and foliage, leaving only tufts of foliage on the ends of branches. You should avoid “lion’s tailing” because:
- Increased sunlight reaching the interior of the tree can cause sunscald and cankers.
- Limbs become weak and more susceptible to breaking.
- It stimulates the rapid growth of weakly attached shoots that are more likely to fail.
- It removes too much foliage, severly reducing photosynthesis and the production of energy for future growth.
- It destroys the natural form of the tree.
- Remember: It is strictly prohibited to top a street tree or a tree in a planting easement in Hanover Township.
- In order to provide proper clearances for vehicles overhanging the roadway, walkways and sidewalks, please have trees pruned regularly.
- Minimum height requirement for lower branches
- overhanging walkways and sidewalks – minimum clearance 8 feet.
- overhanging roads – minimum clearance 15 feet.
Chapter 168. Trees
§168-5. Planting; permits; protection; maintenance.