The cold temperatures of winter are here, and your trees and bushes have finally entered their dormant stage for the year. During these colder months, many people think little about their trees and bushes, but the reality is that this is the perfect time to do a bit of winter pruning to maximize growth in the upcoming year.
Why bother with pruning during the winter months? It offers some hidden benefits you may not have considered. It is the perfect time to maintain or reduce plant size, preventing overgrowth and rejuvenating them to encourage more vigorous foliage, flower, and fruit growth in the spring.
Top 3 Reasons for Winter Pruning
- Rejuvenate Your Trees and Shrubs for Spring: Should you choose to cut back your trees and shrubs during the winter months, you’re going to rejuvenate them. Winter pruning actually encourages growth in the spring. The cold helps the tree close the cuts faster before warm weather sets in. Think of it as growth stimulation, and it ultimately means a healthier, stronger plant throughout the season. Your plants will look beautiful without growing too large and overtaking your landscape.
- Winter Pruning Stops Disease: Choosing to prune in the winter can mean stopping the spread of disease. Dutch elm disease and other types of tree and shrub problems spread fast as temperatures warm up and through the growing season. During the winter, though, disease causing bacteria, fungus, or insects are typically dead or dormant and waiting for warmer weather. Because of that, you’re less likely to transmit diseases from plant to plant as you prune.
- Pruning Now Means a Chance to Take a Closer Look: The leaves are gone. Now you can really get a good look at the structure of the trees and shrubs in your yard, and that closer look could save the plant itself. Dead structures need to be removed for the health of the tree, but it’s not always easy to see those when they’re covered in leaves. During the winter, though, it’s easy to see absolutely everything to ensure your plants make it into the spring in a healthy fashion.