Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tree Pruning..

During the fall and winter months the Landscape Operations Team sets specific goals to accomplish during the non-growing season that normally cannot be addressed during the busy spring and summer months.   In 2013/2014 we are performing selective pruning on many of our mature Live Oaks, Palms and Pine trees.   There are numerous goals that we are trying to achieve during this process, which include addressing any structural or health-related issues, providing more sunlight to the turf below, and improving the overall aesthetics of the trees.  It can be challenging to prune older, more mature trees due to the expansive branching and overall size.  We were able to achieve the desired results by having very specific roles for each team member.  One person was designated as the spotter in order to define which branches needed to be removed while also assisting in safety of ladders and communicating to other team members of falling branches.  One very important aspect of the spotter is that he/she must be properly trained in proper tree pruning techniques.  Another team member operates a forklift with a basket attachment that allows a third team member to elevate into the tree canopy to prune any dead wood, make any necessary reductions cuts or to eliminate any cross-branching.  By definition,  a reduction cut is performed to remove a larger branch from within the canopy in order to designate a dominant trunk, which typically will increase the overall structure of the tree and minimize any splitting of the trunk during high wind situations.   A removal cut is typically performed to remove any major branches affecting the overall aesthetics of the tree.   The Team is doing well and we are scheduled to complete the process by the end of November.