Ryan Rose

How To Cut: Part Two

red-rubber-mulchChoose The Right Tool

By deciding where to cut first, you will know how thick the wood at your cut site is. This, and the presence of considerations like narrow crotch angles with nearby wood and other access considerations, will tell you what tool you should use to make your cut.

For the cuts you can reach from ground level, you will choose between 3 main tools. For cuts over 7 feet high you’ll need tools with poles. Always bring all the tools you might need out into the field with you. You should carry pruners and saws comfortably in holsters and tuck loppers into a belt. Otherwise, it is easy to get lackadaisical and try to use the wrong tool instead of the right one you left behind in the shed.

Larger limbs will require larger tools, but always use the smallest tool that works most comfortably. We are more than happy to tackle these larger limbs and trees. We are experts at tackling these projects with precision and skill.

Now, if you do not feel comfortable or simply don’t have the proper tools to do any tree maintenance, we are more than happy to do any of this work for you. Also, if you have multiple trees to remove or just don’t have the time to do it, we are here for you. We can handle all of your tree cutting and removal in the Tri-Cities (Kennewick, Richland, Pasco) and even West Richland. We look forward to being your preferred tree maintenance provider.

How To Cut: Part One

1424452_58047644Have Sharp Tools. You must have sharp tools. Pruning is essentially surgery. You can’t do surgery with a dull scalpel. A clean pruning cut slices wood, it doesn’t tear it. Dull blades tear wood fibers, killing more living cells and blocking the healing process.

Choose Where To Cut. Whether you are removing wood that is dead, damaged, or diseased or pruning out wood for other purposes like thinning or shaping the plant, your first step to making a good cut is deciding which branch needs to be cut.

Once you’ve decided on which branch to cut, find a good cut site. When pruning or cutting a branch a year or older off trees and shrubs, there will be a “collar” ringing the base of the branch. On older wood, this areas is large and more visible. Cut above this ring. Never cut into it. When cutting smaller wood, locate your cut just above a strong node with either one or more healthy buds or, even better, a healthy offshoot.

On hardwood that is over three years old, buds are buried within the wood. If this is the case, make the cut at the height you want. If the wood is healthy, you’ll see regrowth from a hidden bud eventually. Afterwards, you can follow up with any further cuts to remove dead wood.

For the best cut, when possible, cut to an offshoot that is not only healthy, but points in the direction you want future growth to occur. This is usually away from the center of the plant. It’s usually worth cutting back farther and pruning off more wood to get this situation.

Now, if you do not feel comfortable or simply don’t have the proper tools to do any tree maintenance, we are more than happy to do any of this work for you. Also, if you have multiple trees to remove or just don’t have the time to do it, we are here for you. We can handle all of your tree maintenance needs and services in the Tri-Cities (Kennewick, Richland, Pasco) and even West Richland. We look forward to being your preferred tree maintenance provider.

How To Recognize Dead Branches Part 2

If you haven’t read part one of this two part series, you should go back and read what you missed. Okay, now that you’re caught up, we can proceed to part two.

Shake the branch in question. A slim, (roughly under a half inch in diameter) living branch should be flexible, bendable without cracking. If the wood is dead, it will snap. It will also often feel lighter, drier and hollower. Walking past shrubs with gloves shaking suspicious branches is a great way to quickly find dead wood.

Look for buds. Early spring when the buds begin to swell and break is a great time for this sign. If a node on the branch contains even one firm or swelling bud, the branch is still alive. If all the nodes are bare of buds, or has only dry buds that collapse when squeezed between your fingers, the branch is dead.

Look at the branch collar. The branch collar is the ring that completely encircles the base of a branch, just above where it attaches to its parent branch or the trunk. The collar will usually be slightly raised or swollen looking. When the branch dies, the collar at its base begins, year by year, trying to engulf and swallow the dead branch. If you see a roll of wood that seems to be creeping up your branch, that branch has probably been dead a while, and should be cut off just above the collar.

Now, if you do not feel comfortable or simply don’t have the proper tools to do any tree maintenance, we are more than happy to do any of this work for you. Also, if you have multiple trees to remove or just don’t have the time to do it, we are here for you. We can handle all of your tree maintenance needs and services in the Tri-Cities (Kennewick, Richland, Pasco) and even West Richland. We look forward to being your preferred tree maintenance provider.

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