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August – coming into SPRING!

………. most spring cleaning of gardens is undertaken late August to Mid September….So now is the time to book to have your garden cleared of all winter garden debris! It is also the time to spring clean your lawn areas – scarify, fertilise, top dress. It is also the time to compost your garden thoroughly, as well as to apply a good organic fertilizer to all your garden beds.

Regarding TREE PRUNING, which is often part of our spring garden clean-up, please see below……

(Contrary to what is good for the tree…)winter is when most pruning is done.Many organizations – and people – have a shortage of work for their staff during this period, and pruning trees is a handy way of keeping their staff busy during this period.(remember, one can’t fire your staff for the winter months, then re-hire them for the summer months…… you would end up with no staff!).

From a biological point of view – i.e. the tree’s point of view – pruning during the vegetation period (the growing period) – the summer months – is best for all trees.During the growing season, the tree reacts very quickly to damage. The vessel systems of the broadleaved trees and the tracheids of conifers are blocked by tyloses, or are sealed by resins, as soon as a branch is cut off, which stops infections

The wound area begins to grow over immediately and in just a few months the woundwood covers the edges of the wound areas. The risk of infection decreases considerably

However, one can prune certain trees in late winter if the temperature is benign – i.e. not less than -10 degree centrigrade! Certain trees should not be pruned until after they have got their new leaf coverage, such as Silver Birch (Betula), maples (Acers).These trees should only be pruned during the tree’s growing period. Many Prunus specias, such as cherry and plum, should also preferably be pruned during their growing season, as this decreases their risk of infection

Pruning should not be undertaken from budburst until the leaves are fully developed, as, during this period the tree consumes a large portion of its stored energy. All damage, including pruning wounds, leads to a difficult stress situation, especially for trees that are weakened. A weakened tree can be ruined completely by pruning at this time.

With this in mind, all pruning should STOP, from budburst until the leaves are fully developed – i.e. November, December

So, the best time to prune most trees is in summer after they have their leaves, or late winter before budburst…..


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