Will A Tree Die If You Cut Off Branches?

More often than not, gardeners need to cut off their tree branches from time to time. As trees grow, they tend to develop dead branches due to various reasons. Thus, getting rid of unwanted branches is necessary.

But you have to cut off tree branches using the correct techniques. Otherwise, you might end up damaging the whole plant.

Avoid over-trimming and under-trimming the branches. Therefore, it is essential to know the correct method of cutting off tree branches. Ultimately, a tree will not die if the branches are cut off correctly.

Can I cut off all branches from the tree? 

Trees become healthier when you cut off their dead branches. However, you can damage a tree when you cut off all its branches. Before you begin getting rid of the tree branches, it would be best to evaluate the number of healthy branches and dead branches on the tree.

This way, you’ll determine whether removing all the branches from the tree is necessary. Gardening experts discourage getting rid of all the branches. Some of the disadvantages of cutting off all branches from the tree include:

  • Poor aesthetics:

Cutting off all branches makes the tree look less appealing. If the tree is in your yard, it will tamper with your outdoor living area’s aesthetics.

  • Reduced tree lifespan:

Typically, you shorten its lifespan when you remove all branches from a tree. Remember, by cutting off all branches, you interfere with the tree’s foundation and structure. Consequently, you threaten its survival. In turn, the entire tree will die.

It would be best to cut off the dead branches only. This way, you promote the health of the tree.

Where do dead tree branches come from?

Dead branches on trees occur due to an inadequate supply of nutrients. Branches located where there is low sunlight penetration and moisture supply are more likely to become unhealthy and die in the long run.

Such branches may appear weaker and wilted compared to others. It would be best to cut off all dead branches as soon as possible.

Doing this is the only way to boost the growth of healthy branches. Once you get rid of all dead branches, all the nutrients will nourish the healthy branches. At the end of the day, you will have a healthy tree.

Is it possible to restore dead branches?

Unfortunately, you cannot restore dead branches. So, get rid of all of them before they tamper with other branches’ growth. Keep in mind that branches are often located on the trunk’s external section.

Thus, it is impossible to feed dead branches with nutrients since their passages are no longer functional.

How does a dead tree branch look like? 

Since experts recommend cutting off only dead branches, it is essential to distinguish between a healthy branch and a dead branch.

Usually, dead branches are weaker and can easily break. On the flip side, healthy branches require more effort to snap. Additionally, when you snap a healthy branch, it’s often green and moist on the inside.

Is it compulsory to get rid of dead branches?

Ignoring the dead branches in your tree will hinder the growth of other branches. As a result, this will affect the entire development of the tree. The presence of dead branches will restrict the supply of adequate nutrients to the healthy branches.

Once you notice dead branches, get rid of them immediately. However, ensure you cut them off appropriately to avoid damaging the tree. If you have no clue how to go about the process, it would be best to hire a tree surgeon.

Can you fix an over-pruned tree?

The method you use to trim off branches from a tree often varies depending on the tree type and the kind of pruner you use. However, in general, experts recommend cutting off not more than 20% of the canopy.

Occasionally, homeowners can make a mistake when prune the branches. Below are some of the ways that might help you to fix an over-pruned tree.

Determine the tree type:

Some trees rarely get affected by over-pruning. So, you need not worry when dealing with such trees. All you have to do is give them time to grow back. Conversely, some trees begin to die immediately you over-prune the branches.

Knowing what you are dealing with can help you determine the best solution to the problem.

Hire a gardening professional:

It is vital to get a gardening expert’s opinion. They will advise you best on how to fix the problem. At times, you will need to get rid of the whole tree. On the other hand, professionals may advise giving the tree some time to grow back.

Add more nutrients to the tree:

Even though the tree is likely to grow back, it would be best to give it more nutrients. Remember, the tree is struggling to grow back healthy branches. Consider adding fertilizer when necessary. Also, keep the soil fertile by mulching and watering the tree when necessary.

Help the plant take form:

When the tree branches start growing back, prune them frequently to keep them strong. Use the famous pruning method, thinning, to ensure you have a level canopy.

Avoid repeating the same mistake:

After your tree branches have grown back, be careful not to repeat the same mistake. Consider hiring a professional to cut off the branches from your tree. If you are conducting a DIY project, ensure you have adequate knowledge on how to go about the whole process.

Employing a tree surgeon 

If you plan to revive a tree, it would be best to employ a tree surgeon. Tree surgeons know best how to restore overcut and undercut branches. Although you might end up spending a lot, consider the life of your tree. Fortunately, there is a wide range of reliable tree surgeons in the United States.

Go ahead and trim off the branches

Trees do not die if you cut off branches as required. Gardening experts usually recommend cutting off dead branches only. Getting rid of all branches damages the whole tree. So, you have to be careful when cutting off branches.

Moreover, ensure you incorporate the proper technique of removing the branches. Doing this makes the tree healthier and more robust.