Trees can be a beautiful part of your yard and contribute significantly to your landscaping plans. However, you can’t just ignore your trees once they are there. Regular care of your trees is essential; part of that is keeping your trees trimmed. Trimming your trees helps keep your trees healthy and reduces the risk of your trees causing damage to your property.

Understanding the Timing

While you might think you can trim your trees at any time, there are actually specific seasons that are best for this task. While gardening tasks are likely on your mind during the summer, this isn’t the best time for trimming trees. You will want to wait until late fall/winter to do your tree trimming. At this time, your trees have become dormant due to the cold weather. Also, the leaves have fallen off, which makes it much easier to see what you are doing and can help you maintain the tree’s proper structure. Plus, doing it during this time eliminates the risk of cutting into new growth.

However, there are exceptions to this rule. Certain types of trees and shrubs are best pruned after they have bloomed in the spring or summer. If you trim them too early, you risk damaging or removing buds, severely impacting how many flowers you get as they bloom. Some examples of this are crabapple, magnolia, and redbud trees. Basically, if you have a shrub or tree blooming in spring/summer, wait until the flowers have begun to fade before pruning.

Assessing Tree Health and Safety

There are certain signs you can look out for that indicate your trees need to be trimmed.

  1. Overgrowth: If your tree branches have gotten so dense that you are having trouble seeing through them, it’s a sign that your branches must be trimmed. If they aren’t, you might suffer damage if a storm comes through.
  2. Oddly shaped: If you notice that your tree or shrub just looks a bit odd, it might be time to trim some branches to get it back to its proper shape.
  3. Branches that are crossed: When a tree grows, the branches naturally stay away from each other. If branches cross or lean on each other, it’s time for a trim.
  4. Branches that are broken: If you have splintering or half-broken branches, it’s time to remove them. If you don’t get ahead of it, they are likely to fall and could cause damage.
  5. Dead branches: If you have branches that no longer produce foliage, they are likely dead and should be removed.
  6. Diseased limbs: If one limb of your tree is diseased, it must be removed before the disease moves to the rest of the tree.
  7. Nearby power lines: If your tree branches encroach on a power line, they must be trimmed immediately to avoid damaging the line. This should be done by a professional.

Researching Local Regulations and Permits

Before you start trimming your trees, it’s important to research to find out if there are any specific ordinances or regulations related to tree trimming where you live. For example, in certain HOAs in Bloomington or around protected areas of Lake Monroe, you might not be allowed to touch them. Make sure you know everything that your area requires before starting your trimming.

Finding a Qualified Professional

You might be able to handle some tree trimming on your own. However, it’s best to bring in a professional, like Anthony’s Tree Removal in Bloomington, for any projects of a larger size or anything you’re unsure about. You will want to do plenty of research to find someone with experience with your specific issue. Look for companies that have been doing this work for a while and can provide specific examples of what they have done.

Setting Clear Objectives for Tree Trimming

When it comes to tree trimming, you don’t want to just start hacking away at branches. It’s important to start with a plan:

  1. You want to identify your reason for trimming and your ultimate goal.
  2. You want to discuss your plan with your chosen professional. They may have suggestions for you on the best way to move forward.
  3. You will want to consider the long-term health of your tree and your chosen aesthetic for the tree and your property.

Once all these things have been considered, you can move forward with the next phase of the trimming process.

Planning for Tree Trimming Logistics

When it comes time for your tree trimming, consider a couple of other things. It’s polite to let your neighbors know beforehand that you will be doing tree work. This is especially important if any heavy machinery is involved that may be disruptive to your neighbors. You will also want to prepare the area near the tree for trimming. Make sure the tree can easily be gotten to and that there is nothing around that could be damaged by falling branches.

Safety Precautions during Tree Trimming

If you choose to do your tree trimming on your own, there are safety precautions you need to take.

  1. Wear appropriate safety gear.
  2. If you have to get up high to reach tree branches, ensure you are using proper safety measures for working at heights.
  3. Ensure the area around the tree is clear of items and people to ensure nothing/no one is damaged or hurt.

Post-Trimming Care and Maintenance

After trimming the tree, you’ve got some work left to do. You need to ensure you properly dispose of trimmed branches and debris, which can vary based on your area. (If you need help with debris removal, you can reach out to Anthony’s Junk Hauling in Bloomington.) Next, you need to consider any tree wound care and treatment that needs to occur. The professional you work with should be able to guide you on this. Finally, you should schedule follow-up inspections and future trimming.


There is more to tree trimming than you might expect. However, bringing in a specialist will help you through the process. Anthony’s Tree Removal is a trusted expert who can give you the guidance you need. Contact us today if you don’t have the skills, equipment, or time to carry out your tree trimming on your own.