Trimming trees: The difference between pruning and trimming

For over 300 million years, trees have been around. They were said to be here during the age of the dinosaurs and a few million years after they are still around, providing food, shelter and a means of living to the millions around the world that depend on it for survival.

With an average lifespan of 100 years across all species, scientist have long looked to the cells of trees for answers to questions about the humankind and earth as a whole as it is believed the cells of trees holds more than just chlorophyll.

Trees experience growth very similarly to humans as they move from infancy till they end up with death. At their peak, their strength is at an all time high as their roots are firm in the soil and their branches spread out wide.

However, in order to ensure your tree gets to maturity stage without a hitch, there are techniques that need to be applied from youthful age of a tree. These techniques keep your tree healthy and ensure it does not lose it’s aesthetic appeal. Examples of these techniques are pruning and tree trimming.

Pruning is used in situations where the tree or shrub needs to be protected whilst trimming is performed to make sure the tree grows in the way you intend it to. Pruning involves the removal of dead, loose or infected branches so the hedge could flourish properly whilst trimming is done to remove the overgrown branches that prevent the shrub from receiving enough water and light.

Whilst the concepts of trimming and pruning may be known to all, the differences between both of them is not widely known. Consider some of the following differences:

  • Equipment’s:

Pruning involves the use of shears which comes generally in two types, looping shears and hand shears. These shears have different uses as hand shears are usually used to cut down buds and leaves whilst being held with one hand. Looping shears have a long handle that is used to cut down thick branches.

Trims are done with a hedge trimmer which comes with electric or gas-powered functions. However, the shear (either of them) could be used as a trimming tool as well.

  • When?

To get the best from both trimming and pruning, it is important to target the times of the year when the plants are dormant. Trimming is done twice a year whilst pruning is done once. However, it is essential you identify what type of tree you are working with so as to ascertain first hand when pruning or trimming is a necessity to your tree.