How to Prune Beech Trees

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Beech trees may require multiple prunings for the first few years of life.
Beech trees may require multiple prunings for the first few years of life. (Image: copper beech in spring image by michael luckett from Fotolia.com)

Pruning beech trees encourages them to grow, becoming fuller and bushier. While beech trees require multiple prunings during their first few years of life, once the tree has matured it only needs to be pruned once a year. Keep some basic guidelines in mind to achieve optimal results.

Remove the top 2 to 3 inches off of the top of each stem in the beech tree using a sharp pair of garden shears. This forces the bud to break, allowing new shoots to grow.

Trim the beech tree again later in the year—typically between July and November. Once the cut branches have increased in length by 3 to 4 inches, remove around half of the new growth.

Prune the beech tree the following year, removing the side shoots. This encourages growth, allowing more stems to grow from the sides of the tree.

Prune the beech tree again later that year. Repeat the same process as in Step 3. This type of pruning can be done as many as three times within one year.

Prune the beech tree once a year for each following year. During these pruning sessions, simply remove 1 to 2 inches off of the ends of all branches. In addition, remove any dead or damaged branches.

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