Proper Pruning

treeTerra Bites Lawn Service provides all of our customers with a variety of lawn care services, including landscaping projects. However, if you’re looking to get your hands dirty with a simple yard project, you can work on pruning the ornamental trees or plants in your yard.

Deciduous Trees

Deciduous trees are defined by Wikipedia as- “…falling off at maturity or  tending to fall off, and it is typically used in order to refer to trees or shrubs that lose their leaves seasonally (most commonly during autumn) and to the shedding of other plant structures such as petals after flowering or fruit when ripe.”

These are your basic shade trees that are planted in many lawns to add nice landscaping to neighborhoods. Hopefully the ornamental trees you have in your yard are still young, because if you begin pruning them at a young age, you can actually shape how they grow in the future!

What to Remove

  • Take a good look at the tree you plan to prune; when you follow the trunk up from the base, it should have about five to eight major limbs growing out of the truck about five feet above the base.

  • Low branches coming from the lower part of the trunk should cut away.

  • Any branches that are growing inward or interfere with main limbs should also be cut away.

  • Upright growing shoots, waterspouts, or limbs competing with the main truck should be removed too.


UGA Ext.: Remove suckers originating from below-ground roots (a), low-growing branches that interfere with maintenance (b), upright growing shoots or watersprouts (c), branches that grow inward or rub other branches (d), and branches that compete with the central leader for dominance (e).


Proper Pruning Techniques

It is important to be aware of how you prune a tree, because leaving improper “wounds” can cause the tree to become vulnerable to disease and insects. This could even lead to the tree dying, so be careful! Remember, never leave stubs on a tree from pruning! Check out these great pruning diagrams from our local UGA Extension Horticulturists showing you how to make the proper cut.


UGA Ext.: Always cut back to a bud (a), a lateral branch (b) or main trunk (c), and avoid leaving a stub.

UGA ext pruning

UGA Ext.: To remove heavy branches without damaging the tree, a three-cut sequence is recommended. Cut to the branch collar (swollen area where the branch joins the main trunk) and avoid leaving a stub.

Questions or concerns? Contact us today, as we are happy to help! Terra Bites Lawn Service would be happy to do a variety of landscaping services for you and your family, so give us a call anytime to schedule your appointment! Don’t forget to Like us on Facebook too!