Tree Trimming Tips for DIY Beginners

Owning property means that at some point, you will either need to call a tree service for tree trimming needs or you will need to learn how to do it yourself. If you choose the DIY route, it takes time and an aesthetic eye to get it right. It also takes the right tools and a very careful approach. The following tips will be useful to you if you opt to go the route of DIY pruning and trimming. 

Buy the Right Tools

You will need a chainsaw, an extended pruning saw, loppers, hedge trimmers, lots of strong rope and a few garden stakes. There may be one or two other tools your home and garden store associate may recommend, but only if those tools apply to what you are trying to do to a tree. As far as your hedge trimmers and chainsaw are concerned, make sure that they can both adequately trim thick foliage and cut through limbs and trees that range from a few inches to a couple feet thick in diameter. You do not want to get these power tools caught in brush/foliage or have the chain break on the saw halfway through a cut. 

Start by Trimming Small

Never go whole-hog on trimming and pruning. It often results in very ugly trees left behind with unpleasant shaping and a very hacked-at appearance. Start by trimming small. Pruning the twigs on branches so that the branches and twigs do not become more limbs on the tree is a start. Then step back and take a look at the tree. If a branch needs to be cut away to give the tree a nice shape, you can use either the pruning saw on its pole extension to do this, or the chainsaw. Step back again and decide if anything else needs to be done. Usually, by this point, the tree looks fine and you can move on to the next tree. 

When You Have to Cut Big, Secure the Limb or Tree with Ropes and Stakes

When you have to cut down a tree completely or cut away a very large limb, secure it in the direction away from areas where you do not want the tree or limb to fall. For example, if there is a limb hanging over your roof, wrap ropes around it and tie the ropes to stakes in the ground in the direction you want the limb to fall. Then cut the limb close to the trunk on the side opposite of that. The limb should fall in the direction of the stakes/ropes, thus preventing damage to your roof.