Rick's Tree Service Blog

How to Prune a Magnolia Tree

Magnolias are a beautiful flowering tree native to North America and found most commonly in the southern United States. There are two types of magnolias – evergreen (or southern) and deciduous, with the difference being that evergreen magnolias do not lose their leaves in the fall. Both types need to be carefully and gently pruned in their early years in order to promote growth and optimize flowering each year.

The evergreen can tolerate harder pruning than can the deciduous variety, but neither type of tree should be overpruned. No more than approximately one-third of the branches should be removed at any time. Pruning should be done in the late spring or early summer, once the tree is done flowering for the year. Waiting until late summer or fall to trim could cause you to cut into potential blooming growth for next season, limiting the blossoms in the following spring. It could also leave the tree more vulnerable to disease, by leaving wounds that have not sealed by the time winter weather sets in.

Before pruning, carefully examine the tree for dead or diseased branches. Also, ensure that no part of the tree is close to overhead power lines. If the tree is too close to overhead lines, stop and contact a qualified tree service. If it is safe to proceed, start by removing the dead branches, cutting just outside the branch collar (where the branch meets the tree trunk). For small limbs, pruning shears may be used. For branches larger than one inch in diameter, a pruning saw will be needed, in order to minimize damage to the tree. Be sure that all equipment is sharp, clean and has been disinfected with bleach before it is used.

Once all the deadwood has been removed, proceed to prune out branches that cross one another or rub against one another. This will open up the tree to new growth and allow the tree to put energy into creating more blossoms the next season. Finally, remove any suckers, which are small growths coming from the roots of the tree.

Step back and evaluate the overall shape of the tree. If its symmetrical, stop pruning. If it is lopsided, remove only enough branches to create an even shape throughout.

There are times, however, when a tree needs more extensive pruning, or when trimming yourself could be dangerous. This is especially true when the tree is close to or even hitting overhead power lines. Under those circumstances, it is best to contact a qualified tree service to do the work. Professionals provide a number of services lessening homeowners worries when the tree care issues they are facing are too big for them to handle. See our website <a href=”https://www.rickstreeservice.com”>go to another page</a> for this, and all the other services we provide.

Our tree care experts will come to your property and carefully evaluate the situation, looking for disease and damage to the tree, as well as looking at hazards that may exist in the area. We will provide the equipment, skill and training to trim and care for trees on your property, creating the desired look and minimizing the damage to your property.

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