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On the Importance of Trimming and Pruning

Posted on by Urban Eden

All throughout the Camas, Vancouver, and Washougal, Washington area there are a plethora of trees, shrubs and bushes that are always in need of being trimmed and pruned. After all, there is a reason we call Washington “the evergreen state.” Maybe you have a tree or two, or perhaps a rose or hydrangea plant, which is long overdue for this often-overlooked service.

Many times, the terms “pruning” and “trimming” are used interchangeably; however, these are two different topics implemented to achieve different results. The term “pruning” refers to the removal of dead or diseased parts of the plant; when you cut away a dead branch from a tree, for instance, you are pruning that tree. The term “trimming,” conversely, refers simply to the removal of overgrown portions of the plant; when you cut back the overgrown or bushy portions of an arborvitae, for example, you are trimming that arborvitae. There are several reasons that pruning, and trimming are important aspects of any landscape.

The Health of the Plant

One of the more obvious reasons to trim and prune your trees, bushes and shrubs, is to maintain the proper health of that plant. Removing the dead or diseased parts of the plant keeps insects and other pests at bay. Although insects may not necessarily completely kill your plant, they can, however, spread disease throughout the plant, which deteriorates it and can cause branches to weaken and fall. Pruning a plant in order to thin out the branches, allows more sunlight and air to penetrate into the plant, which decreases the likelihood of pest problems.


Another obvious reason to maintain proper pruning and trimming habits is for the safety of your property and those who dwell within it. Large branches, particularly on trees, can cause serious damage to your home if they are allowed to grow unchecked. Falling branches can seriously injure you or your home, especially during storm season. Similarly, if branches are allowed to rub against your house during considerable windstorms, this can cause substantial damage to the siding of your home. Additionally, vines and other climbing plants, if left untrimmed, can grow underneath your siding and detach it from the rest of your house, which can be costly in the long run.

Ensuring Proper Plant Growth

Pruning and trimming not only improves the overall look of the plant, but it also heavily influences the way in which these plants grow. Properly maintaining this growth is key to a plant’s structural integrity; this also helps diminish the risk of broken and falling branches. Furthermore, trimming and pruning promotes fresh, new growth on any tree, shrub, or bush.

When to Prune and Trim

Obviously, any dead or damaged parts of a plant should be removed immediately, especially in the case of large plants (like trees), where dead limbs can be hazardous. The absolute best time to prune and trim is late fall or winter. During this time of the year, these plants are dormant, so pruning and trimming will not be as stressful on the plant and should not adversely affect the health of the plant. You can also prune in very early spring, just before the plant blooms as well.

Pruning and trimming can be a confusing endeavor and should be done with caution and care. Whether you need a small tree trimmed, rose bushes pruned, or arborvitae shaped up, Urban Eden has the right equipment and knowledge to take care of all your trimming and pruning needs. Contact us, request a FREE estimate or call us today.



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