Best Time To Prune Oak Trees – Pruning oak trees is a simple process that requires only a few steps. For best results, do it during the winter dormant season. This will reduce the risk of disease and pests getting into the wounds. During this period, you should prune 10 to 15 percent of the growth of the branches.
Avoid pruning oak trees during the peak spring growth
If you want to keep your oak trees healthy, you need to avoid pruning them during peak spring growth. This is because pruning during this time can cause them to contract oak wilt, a fungal disease that affects several oak species. Oak wilt is caused by a fungus called Bretziella fagacearum. This fungus lives on the tree’s bark and is spread by beetles that feed on the sap.
It is best to prune oak trees when they are dormant, when the branches are smaller and less likely to be affected by diseases. It is best to prune only the branches that are smaller than 2 inches in diameter, because pruning bigger branches can cause severe damage to the tree. It is also best to use sharp pruning shears when pruning oak trees. Using sharp pruning shears will minimize any damage to the tree and help it to heal more quickly.
Avoid pruning during the dormant winter season
If you want to keep your oak tree in good shape all year round, avoid pruning it during the winter months. During this time, the sap of the tree will run freely, allowing diseases and fungus to grow. If you prune your oak tree during this time, you may leave your tree susceptible to a disease called oak wilt. It is caused by a sap-feeding beetle called the picnic beetle. These insects are attracted to the “wetness” of freshly pruned oak trees and deposit their fungal spores in the open wound.
However, it is important to know when to prune your oak trees. Although it is common for these trees to lose their leaves during the winter season, they may still have some leaves left over. Ideally, you should prune them during the springtime, when the oak trees have emerged from dormancy. During this time, it is easier to prune, because the tree will not be as densely covered in leaves.
Avoid pruning during peak spring growth
It is best to avoid pruning oak trees during their peak spring growth period between mid-March and mid-June. This is when sap flow is at its highest, and the wounds created by pruning can become easily infected with disease. Consequently, most homeowners choose to wait until dormancy to prune their oak trees.
The fungus that causes oak wilt attacks healthy oak trees during the spring. The infection spreads through pruning wounds and attracts sap-sucking beetles. The fungus is especially active in spring and early summer, so pruning should be avoided during this time.
Avoid lifting branches excessively
If you’re planning to prune your oak trees, you should avoid lifting the lower branches excessively. This can damage the plant and can cause crotches and branch angles to become narrow. Excessive lifting can also damage the tree’s natural shape, causing the crown to become top-heavy.
If you’re cutting large branches, make sure you make clean cuts, starting from the tip of the branch and working your way up. Leaving the wounds clean helps the tree to heal quickly, and you’ll reduce the risk of damage and decay.
Avoid spreading fungal spores
If you’re pruning oak trees, you should be aware of the danger of spreading fungal spores. These fungi can cause tree deaths and make other trees at risk for infection. The best way to prevent spreading these fungi is to keep them healthy. If you find signs of fungus, you can consult with a certified arborist who can help you get rid of the problem before it spreads.
Fungal spores are easily spread through cuts in oak trees. Sap feeding beetles can find these wounds and spread the spores within half an hour. If you accidentally cut an oak branch, you should clean it right away with a fungicide or pruning paint to prevent the spread of these spores. You should also disinfect your tools before and after pruning. Using isopropyl alcohol on pruners and equipment is also a good idea.