The ideal tree trimming season is when the plant is dormant, which is winter for the majority of trees and shrubs. However, year-round pruning is often necessary. The worst time to prune is in the spring, but late summer can prove an ideal trimming season in some instances. Dead branches and limbs can be trimmed at any time, and in late summer, when the leaves begin to thin, it can be easier to spot dead areas. Can’t tell if a branch is dead or not? Scrape it lightly with your fingernail—it there’s green underneath, it’s alive. If not, grab the trimmers.
Spring blooming plants can be pruned immediately after the last blossoms fall, which varies from plant to plant. For many plants, this happens in the autumn, which makes late August the perfect time to start watching for the final flowers to drop. However, be careful with moving from plant to plant. You might unknowingly carry diseases on your pruning shears, so rub them down with rubbing alcohol between each plant.
Keeping Trim This Summer
Every species has a best time to prune, so make sure you research the trees and plants in your yard. If this isn’t your forte, or you simply don’t have time, it’s a good idea to hire a skilled landscaper or arborist. These professionals are familiar with all of Utah’s plants and can help manage your yard, which will keep it looking gorgeous year-round. Feeling like a DIY approach is feasible? Make sure you know the proper pruning schedules of some of the most common plants:
- Almonds (flowering): Pruning should take place right after blossoming and in the summer months.
- Arborvitae: Late summer through early winter is the ideal season to prune this popular plant.
- Azaleas: Prune immediately after blossoming, and make sure to remove any hanger-on flower clusters as you go.
- Clematis: If you have a summer bloomer, it’s best to prune in late summer and early fall.
- Euonymus: You can begin pruning both deciduous and evergreen varieties in the autumn, and this practice can continue throughout the winter.
- Hydrangeas: For summer blooms, begin pruning in the autumn.
- Juniper: Autumn is the season for juniper trimming, but ensure the plant is dormant first.
- Mock orange: One of the few plants that calls for mid-summer pruning, August is the perfect time to start.
- Pussy willow: Mid-summer is a great time to start pruning, although you can begin earlier, as long as blossoming has begun.
- Quince: Prune in mid to late summer, then switch to cutting back to the ground come autumn.
- Wisteria: New growth should be pruned in late summer for shaping.
The unique needs of your trees, shrubs and plants depend on the variety, where you live in Utah and the seasonal shifts. For the best results, call Reliable Tree Care and have a local arborist take care of your tree trimming needs year-round.