For the next instalment of our ‘let the sun shine into your garden’ series, we are going to be discussing crown reductions.
Crown reductions are a reduction of height in the tree as well as the spread of the crown. This should not be confused with a practice known as ‘topping’, which is harmful to trees. The tree is decreased in two ways; all over to reduce the size of the crown, or in specific areas to address an imbalance in the shape of the tree. It is important to note that as with crown thinning, it’s advised not to reduce the tree too heavily.
There is a false perception that the value in crown reductions is having as much removed from the tree as possible and this is not advised, as it removes too much foliage, branch structure and therefore energy reserves. This can result in possible health implications to the tree and also causing the tree to react by growing back more rigorously, defeating the purpose of the crown reduction.Crown reductions should be carried out sensitively, which should leave the tree with a natural shape and not leave large thick branch ends on the edge of the crown.
So why should you crown reduce your tree?
There are several reasons why you may want to carry out this kind of work on your trees. Firstly; to maintain a specific shape of the tree. Secondly; when a tree has grown to be too large for the area that it lies, however the tree is still wanted in the garden or outside area. This is especially effective in gardens where the size of the tree is encroaching on the light in your outside area. Lastly; as previously mentioned, to fix an area in the crown which is imbalanced and to create a better overall shape.
As always it is important to have this kind of work carried out by a professional tree surgeon. An experienced expert will have ample experience when it comes to carrying out crown reductions and will be able to give your trees the care they require, without damaging them. A crown reduction gone wrong can make the tree not only look unattractive, but also be detrimental to its health. If you are unsure if a crown reduction is the solution for your tree in question, discuss with your qualified tree surgeon who can suggest different options best suited to your tree.