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Crown Reduction vs. Crown Thinning

Understanding the Differences and Applications

Two of the most common types of tree surgery are crown reductions and crown thinning. While both techniques will see your tree surgeon working on the canopy of the tree, they are in fact very different. Here’s what each one entails, and when they should be used.

Crown Reductions

Crown reduction is a pruning technique that involves carefully selecting and removing branches and foliage from the outer edges of a tree’s canopy. The goal of a crown reduction is to decrease the overall size and volume of the tree’s crown while maintaining its natural shape and structure. This technique is often used to address a canopy growing too large and posing a threat to buildings or passers-by. Crown reduction should only ever be carried out by a skilled professional to prevent stress on the tree and promote healthy regrowth.

Crown Thinning

Crown thinning, on the other hand, involves selectively removing inner branches and foliage from the canopy of a tree. Unlike crown reduction, which focuses on reducing the size of the crown, crown thinning aims to alter the tree’s overall structure to improve air circulation and light penetration. During crown thinning, your tree surgeon will target branches that are competing for space or resources within the canopy. By carefully removing only these branches, they create a more open and balanced crown – which can reduce the risk of disease and damage in rough weather.

Key Differences and Applications

Crown reduction is primarily aimed at reducing the size and volume of a tree’s canopy, whereas crown thinning focuses on improving the tree’s structure, along with airflow and light penetration. Understanding these differences is crucial for determining which one is most appropriate for your tree. So, how is each one most commonly used?

Crown reduction is usually undertaken where space is limited, and trees may pose hazards to nearby structures. By carefully removing overextended branches, your tree surgeon can reduce the risk of property damage and help maintain a safe clearance between trees and nearby buildings. It can also be used to rejuvenate older trees and improve their appearance.

In contrast, crown thinning is often the best option for trees that have dense or overcrowded canopies. By removing excess foliage and branches, tree surgeons can improve air circulation, reduce wind resistance and also ensure better light penetration. This can be vital in heavily wooded areas such as country lanes, and also in gardens where you have a lot of trees competing for space and resources.

What Next?

Crown reduction and crown thinning are two essential types of tree surgery, and working with an experienced tree surgeon will ensure that they carry out the one that is most suited to the needs of your tree. So, what are you waiting for? Get in touch with a trusted team today – your trees will certainly thank you!

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