How to Prune Redwood Trees

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Redwood trees can grow very large.
Redwood trees can grow very large. (Image: Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images)

Redwoods are predominately located on the West Coast of North America. Several different species range from super large coastal redwoods to evergreen redwoods like the dawn redwood, typically transplanted from China. When planted in a suburban area like a backyard, expect redwood trees to obtain a rather large size. However, they will not reach the size of the redwoods growing naturally, the largest trees in the world. If you have redwood trees in your yard, it's important to prune them to keep them healthy.

Things You'll Need

  • Tree saw
  • Chainsaw
  • Pruning shears
  • Ladder

Inspect the tree during the winter months (November to February) for cracked, rotted or dead limbs. Cut the limb off with a tree saw or a chainsaw (if the size of the branch warrants) directly after the slight bulge where the branch grows from the trunk. Do not cut limbs during the spring, summer or fall months; doing so could stunt the healthy growth of the tree.

Remove new growth limbs from the base of the tree directly after the hump -- if the area has heavy traffic or you want to use the tree for shade. Cut upward approximately 6 to 7 feet. Use a tree saw or chainsaw to cut the limbs. Again, do this during the winter months to avoid stunting the tree.

Trim dead leaves during the growing season with a pair of pruning shears. Prune directly behind the leaf. Leave as much of the stem as possible to promote fresh growth. If you see stem rot, cut the stem off with the pruning shears.

Trim suckers, or small tree sprouts that form around the base of your tree from its roots, when you see them. Use pruning shears or a tree saw.

Tips & Warnings

  • Ensure you take safety precautions before using a ladder or climbing the tree when pruning.

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