5 Reasons to Prune Your Deciduous Trees in Winter

The Australian winter is warmer than most deciduous trees' natural habitats. But despite that, any deciduous trees on your property will still take the reduction in temperature as a cue to go into dormancy. And once your trees have shed their leaves, this is a great time to do some pruning. 

Although most people do their tree pruning in spring and summer, pruning your tree in winter offers several important and useful benefits.

1. Remove Branches Before Pests Arrive

In the spring and summer months, pests abound. This means that pruning during those seasons comes with the risk of attracting wood borers, carpenter ants and termites. But during winter, those pests are less active than they are in the warmer spring and summer months. This fact makes winter a safer time to prune your tree.

2. Thin the Canopy to Protect Against Diseases

If you noticed that your tree's canopy was a little on the thick side last summer, then this winter is a good time to thin the canopy. When a tree's branches are fully laden with leaves, good air circulation is important. When there is enough spacing between branches, air can circulate and keep insects and pests from congregating.

Diseases will also have a harder time infecting your tree if air can circulate freely through its canopy.  

3. Improve the Shape of Your Tree

When your tree is leafless in winter, you can get a much better view of its overall structure. Because of that, winter is a good time to prune your tree to improve its shape.

4. Remove Dangerous Branches Before Summer

As mentioned earlier, you can see your tree's structure more clearly during the winter months when it has already shed its leaves. If you spot potentially dangerous branches in your tree's canopy during winter, remove them before they sprout leaves later and become heavy. Weighty branches sometimes break off in summer. Trees also shed branches during especially warm summers.

5. Healing Occurs Faster in Winter

One of the best reasons to prune in winter is that your tree can put more energy into healing. During the summer months when your tree is busy putting energy into its leaves and seed formation, your tree will have less energy available to heal pruning wounds. But during winter, all your tree's energy can go into healing pruning wounds, thus wounds heal faster.

Winter is a good time for pruning a tree. If you feel your tree can benefit from some pruning this winter season, get in touch with a professional arborist or tree specialist near you.