It might surprise you to learn that a white oak tree can grow to be 100 feet tall and live for up to 600 years. Keep in mind that proper tree maintenance plays a role in the health of your oak trees.
If you have oak trees in your yard, you’re probably wondering about the best time of year to trim them. Although you can remove dangerous tree branches at any time throughout the year, there are certain precautions you need to take into consideration. This is why it’s best to hire a professional for any type of tree trimming or branch removal.
However, if you’re looking for routine tree-trimming information to care for your oak trees, then there is a right and wrong time of year to remove limbs. Pruning your oak trees at the wrong time of year may expose them to harmful pests and other invasive species.
This article walks you through the best time of year to trim an oak tree, what tools you need, and other precautionary details. Keep reading to learn more.
When to Trim an Oak Tree
Oak trees require limited maintenance and are sturdy, large trees. However, you may need to occasionally trim your oak trees to ensure optimal health.
The best time of year for oak tree trimming is towards the end of winter. You should always perform oak tree care after winter’s coldest days have passed. February, for example, is a great month for trimming oak trees.
When you trim an oak tree during colder months, you’re reducing the risk of invasive diseases or pests. There are also fewer leaves on the trees, so you can shape and trim them easier than during the warm summer months.
Additionally, the spring and summer months are when fungal diseases are most likely to occur. These diseases infect trees through their open tree wounds, making the winter months ideal for trimming trees.
Bugs also carry disease and can infect your trees when trimmed during warm months. These diseases can travel through the connective roots of the tree, infecting other healthy trees nearby. Trimming trees during winter months, however, works to prevent bugs from contaminating these tree wounds.
Ways to Prevent Disease
You can take preventative measures and protect your trees from disease. Although you should trim your oak trees during the winter, there’s a chance a branch or tree limb may break off in the summer. You may even need a tree limb removed if there’s a storm and damage to your tree, for example.
These open wounds leave your tree vulnerable to disease. If you suspect something is wrong with your oak tree or that it may have been infected by an invasive species, always contact a professional for assistance.
How Often Should You Trim an Oak Tree?
You can schedule regular tree trimming, with younger trees requiring pruning every 2 to 3 years. Older trees may only require tree trimming every 3 to 5 years.
If you’re unsure about how often to trim your trees, contact a professional to assess their growth and overall health. They’ll work with you to create a tree-trimming schedule.
It’s important to let professionals handle tree trimming. The tree care industry is reported as being the fourth most dangerous industry in the US, so always defer to a professional when trimming and cutting down trees. Certain branches may be too dangerous for you to remove yourself, and professionals use special safety equipment when removing large, dangerous tree limbs.
Professionals also remove large branches from your property, making clean-up much easier.
Worst Time to Trim an Oak Tree
Mid-summer is the worst time to trim your oak trees. This time of year is when your trees are actively growing, and sap-feeding beetles are the most active. When you remove branches this time of your, you’ll likely spread these beetles from one tree to the next, along with any other diseases your trees might have.
This is the time of year when beetles and fungi take refuge in the open wounds of your trees. Disease moves quickly from tree to tree this time of year and can kill an oak tree within a few weeks. If you notice a loss of leaves or wilting, contact a professional immediately.
Oak Tree Trimming Tools
Although it’s best to let professionals trim your oak trees, you need to be prepared if you have to trim small, low branches yourself.
Here are some tools to buy before trimming your oak trees:
- Pruning shears
- Lopping shears
- Buck saw/limb saw
- Rope saw
- Safety goggles
- Safety gloves
These tools are essential for keeping you safe while trimming an oak tree. They’ll also make the pruning process easier.
Professional Tree Trimming
When trimming an oak tree, remember to wait until the winter months, preferably February. However, if you need a tree branch removed due to damage, Tree-Line Arbor Care can help. We specialize in tree removal, tree pruning, storm and emergency services, and more. Get an estimate today to see how we can aid you with all your tree-care needs.