Winter Pruning 101

Winter Pruning 101

As the Fall season starts to near its end, the dormant season approaches, along with a new opportunity to care for your trees and shrubs: winter pruning.

Many people are often surprised to hear that we still prune trees in the winter. Often, it’s not believed to be a good time to prune, or even physically possible due to the colder outdoor conditions. This couldn’t be farther from the truth.

The main reasons we prune trees are for safety, health, and aesthetics. We want to make sure your trees are proactively set up for a long, flourishing life. We want to mitigate the risk of failure in any part of your trees, which could pose hazards to you and your loved ones. We also want to enhance the beauty of your trees while we’re at it. The dormant season gives us some advantages in meeting these goals.


Because the ground is harder during the winter, there is often less impact to the surrounding area when we’re dropping tree limbs and sections from up high. Since foliage on deciduous trees are absent during the winter, it is easier to see the structure of the tree and make informed decisions about where to prune. While in trees, climbers can also identify hard to see defects and damage from pests/diseases that occurred over the previous season, giving us valuable early warning about potential issues before they become life-threatening for the tree and hazardous to you.


Another advantage of dormant pruning is that making cuts while plants aren’t actively pushing growth won’t stimulate more growth. This makes it easier to put plants like hollies on a cycle of pruning that helps it keep its shape throughout the year, while also reducing the amount of pruning needed.

Our staff are not only prepared for the conditions, but thrive on the challenge of working on your trees in the winter time. We train throughout the year to keep safety our primary concern, and take extra precautions during adverse conditions to keep ourselves and our clients safe.

When you see our crews and consulting arborists on your property this winter, please feel free to ask questions. Education is one of our biggest priorities as a company, and we want you to feel comfortable knowing that your trees are in the hands of compassionate experts you can trust.

Thank you,

The Arborscapes Team