When trimming an oak tree, or Quercus, you must choose the appropriate time. You prune an oak tree to sustain its health, provide a safe immediate environment and create an aesthetically pleasing tree. You will find the proper timing by considering several factors that affect the health of the particular tree being trimmed, as well as the trees in the surrounding areas.
Although you prune many trees in the spring, the health of an oak tree requires pruning at a different time. When an oak is pruned in the spring, summer or fall, sap is secreted from the wound. This fresh sap then attracts beetles, which may be infected with a number of life-threatening diseases. The greatest concern for infection involves the fungal disease oak wilt. After exposure to oak wilt, many oak trees will die very quickly.
Oak Tree Health
To avoid oak wilt and the spread of many other diseases, only prune an oak tree in the winter when it is dormant and will not secrete sap. As well, removing diseased or insect-infested wood is easier during the winter because there is no foliage to hide unhealthy wood. By choosing to trim in the winter, you can do a more thorough job, avoid infection, resulting in a healthier tree.
Because oak trees are often focal points in landscapes, humans or human development often occupy their immediate surroundings. Choosing to trim oak trees before they present any immediate danger, as well as when there is little activity nearby, is important for safety. Consider removing branches that may break off in severe weather or grow into buildings or wires in the coming spring.
Aesthetics and Trimming
Consider the proper timing to maintain a beautiful oak tree after trimming. If you follow a regular maintenance schedule, with trimming taking place every winter, you can maintain natural beauty. A neglected oak tree can become difficult or impossible to prune. Therefore, trimming should begin before the tree has reached the maximum size for the space occupied.
- "A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants"; Christopher Brickell, et al.; 2002
- Photo Credit oak-tree leaves image by Galyna Andrushko from Fotolia.com
How to Prune Oak Trees
Oak trees come in about 400 different species and can be found in many countries above the equator. Most oak trees can...
How to Prune a Live Oak Tree
Live oaks are majestic trees that rise to heights of 80 to 100 feet. They are native in the southern United States...
When to Trim a Florida Live Oak Tree?
Native throughout the state of Florida, the live oak (Quercus virginiana) provides welcome shade in parks and gardens during the long, hot...
Oak Trees Benefits
Worldwide, there are more than 600 different species of oak trees (Quercus spp.). Native to the woodlands and scrub lands of the...
How to Trim Oak Trees
Oak trees are best pruned between November and March, their dormant season, which encourages new growth the following spring and summer. Prune...