En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - June 17, 2009

From: Manitowoc, WI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Pruning, Trees
Title: How to prune my Linden tree?
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

We have a 15 yr old Linden in the backyard. North side of home. It can use some pruning at the lower branches. Which branches do we prune and when? Also we have some river birches back there. Other side of the backyard. 2 clumps of 2. The bark is cracked, but they are holding their own. When to prune and where? Thank-you

ANSWER:

The short answer to the "when" part of the question is "Not Now". Pruning of trees is best done in the late winter/early spring as the trees are breaking dormancy. This helps to ensure the healing of the cuts. Pruning can also be done in late fall after leaf drop.

Pruning of mature trees can be quite an undertaking, so I am going to refer you to several websites that address various aspects of tree care and pruning.

A publication by the South Dakota Dept. of Agricululture ; "The Basics of Tree Pruning".

An article from the Penn State University College of Agricultural Sciences; "Pruning Mature Trees is Best Left to Professionals".

"Tree Care Information" from the International Society of Arborculture. While on this page, click on the "Why Hire an Arborist" article from the menu on the left side.

For some help close to home, check with the folks at the Manitowoc County Cooperative Extension Office .

The Wisconsin Arborists Association can assist you in finding an arborist in your area.

Somewhere in all of this information I found the truism: Pruning trees is more that cutting off branches.

 

 

 

More Trees Questions

Transplanting live oaks in summer
July 17, 2008 - I have a need to transplant a live oak tree on a home building site. The need is now, the house is almost completely built out and the owners did not prep the site by moving trees or prepping them to ...
view the full question and answer

Over-trimmed junipers in Shell Beach CA
May 16, 2010 - Help! My husband decided to "trim" the juniper bushes that are in front of our house that create a great private front yard. I guess he cut back into the dead wood and now nothing is regrowing. It'...
view the full question and answer

Oak leaf fall causing ivy damage
August 28, 2007 - I read the A/Q in the Austin American-Statesman Saturday, August 25, regarding the leaves falling now from the live oaks. I am experiencing the same thing, but it is the leaves of my post oaks that a...
view the full question and answer

Freeze-damaged Texas Mountain Laurel in Austin, TX.
May 05, 2011 - I have a Texas Mountain Laurel (Sophora secundiflora) that is several years old. During this past winter, one of the freezes we had split one of the largest trunk right below the soil line. T...
view the full question and answer

Trees that are non-toxic for horses
May 02, 2008 - I live in Ponder, Tx. We have some acreage and horses and wish to plant trees to afford some shade for the horses. Can you tell me what trees are toxic to horses.
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center