Strong monsoon winds can wreak havoc on trees, especially if the trees have dense canopies. You can help reduce the risk of wind damage to your trees by performing preventative canopy thinning before summer storms hit. Here are some basic tree pruning tips:
• Do not prune a newly-planted tree during the first year, except to remove dead branches
• Cut back to the union of two branches, not in the middle of a branch
• On large branches, use the three-cut method to prevent bark from tearing down along the trunk. When cutting the undercut, item 1 on the diagram, just cut about 1/8 inch into the limb to prevent any tearing as you are making the main cut.
• Do not remove more than 25% of a mature tree’s foliage
• For limbs up to a half-inch thick, use hand pruners
• For limbs up to one inch thick, use scissor or bypass-type long-handled loppers
• For larger limbs, use pruning saw