Landscaping & Yard Care

7 Winter Tree Pruning Tips

Now is the time to prune many of the trees in your yard. They are dormant now and don’t mind being pruned at all. Follow these 7 guidelines and your trees will love you for it.

  1. Start on the inside of the tree. Remove any dead wood or any branches that are growing toward the center of the tree.
  1. Remove any branches that are crossing another branch or rubbing together. The inside of the tree needs to be open and airy.
  1. Move to the outside of the tree. Stand back and look at the tree and imagine how you would like the tree to look.
  1. Draw an imaginary line around the tree to the exact shape of how you want the tree to look. Then start removing any branches that are growing outside of that line.
  1. The same rules apply for the outside of the tree. Open the tree up a little and remove any branches that are too close to another branch or are rubbing or crossing another branch.
  1. When removing branches near the trunk of the tree always make your cuts as close to flush with the trunk as possible and do not leave a stub sticking out.
  1. Wounds larger than a 50¢ piece can be painted over with a tree wound dressing, but in most cases it’s not necessary, and some professionals feel that wound dressings slow the healing process.

Mike McGroarty is the owner of McGroarty Enterprises and the author of several books. You can visit his website at  and read his blog at

Related Articles & Free Email Newsletter

Celebrating Cedar Trees

Proper Planting Instructions for Trees and Shrubs

Understanding Stressed Trees: Insects, Disease & Environment

Subscribe to our Free Email Newsletter

Comment here