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Useful Tips for Pruning Pine Trees

Bidisha Mukherjee Dec 1, 2018
Pruning of pine trees is important for their proper growth as well as to maintain their attractive look. Keep reading to enhance your knowledge on pruning pine trees.
Pines are naturally very hardy in nature. They can be grown at home without much care and maintenance. For this reason, more and more people opt for growing them in their home garden. However, there are some common problems faced while growing these trees. Sometimes, they tend to grow too large for the area where they have been planted.
They also often get attacked by various insects, and as a result, the affected parts become weak. In order to tackle all such problems, regularly pruning these trees is a must.

Planting and Caring

Before we discuss the pruning technique, let us find out about the suitable conditions needed for the growth and development of pines. Even though they can survive in poor soil conditions, moist and well-drained soil is ideal for their growth.
The best times for planting the seeds are the months of December or January, and they germinate by March or April. They should be planted in small pots, with the seeds placed vertically down just below the surface of the soil. Proper exposure to sunlight and regular watering is a must at this stage.
Baby pine must be kept in shade as they burn in heat. After the seedlings grow 6-10 inches, they are shifted to bigger pots and in 2 years, are planted in the ground.
Most of the pine trees species are adapted to drought condition, hence they require only occasional watering. They should be watered in the fall in order to prevent drying out in the winter. For the first five years, you should fertilize the tree either during early spring or late fall.


Pruning is an integral part of the pine tree maintenance. It is a process that involves removal of dead, diseased, and injured parts of the plants. It will also improve the shape and size of the tree. This will encourage the tree to grow denser foliage.
The ideal time for pruning is late spring. First, look out for the dead or injured parts of the tree. Mostly the dead branches will be near the trunk of the tree. Once you have located one or more dead branches, remove them either with the pruning saw or shears.
Many branches of pines tend to touch the ground, which often looks haphazard. These need to be eliminated to give a neat and straight look to the tree. This will also make the basic clean-up work under the tree easier. If the pine is tall enough, then you have to use a pole pruner to cut its higher branches.
It consists of a saw and a hook blade that can help you to reach out to the upper part of the tree quite easily. The new growth takes place in the form of pine candles. The center pine candle grows rapidly and makes the tree taller.
It has to be pruned by half with the help of a sharp pruning shears when it is still soft and light green in color. In the next season, new buds will grow at that site. Moreover, pruning the candle helps you to control the size of the pine as per your requirement.
Now, we know that pruning will save pines from diseases and ensure proper growth. Take care that you do not over-prune them. This means, do not prune too many branches from the tree at one time as it would slow down the overall growth of the tree and would weaken its remaining branches. It is recommended to keep two-third branches of the pine intact.