If you have a cherry blossom tree growing in your garden, you will definitely want to know how to prune it. Generally, pruning of this tree is ignored by gardeners and this can have an effect on the number of blossoms that the tree produces each year. By pruning the tree correctly, the canopy is opened up and this facilitates proper development of the tree. A cherry blossom tree requires full sunlight in order to grow properly and produce blossoms each spring.
Generally, it is advised that cherry blossom trees be pruned in late winter or early part of spring, just as the blossom buds are beginning to swell up. If you prune during this time, the tree will heal faster and prevent open wounds for prolonged periods of time. In addition, pruning during this time also prevent winter injury. (See Reference 1)
Before pruning the tree, try to image the shape you would want the tree to have and then proceed accordingly. It is recommended that diseases, dead and damaged branches are removed. Make use of a sharp pair of clipper to remove the branches smoothly. Any branches that are crossing over should be cut off. However, cut the weaker branch and allow the stronger one to remain. Any branches that have not branched should be cut off by 25 percent to facilitate growth of side branches. Make sure you retain the branches that grow from the center towards the outside of the canopy. But cut away low lying branches which are touching the ground or at a risk of touching the ground. (See Reference 1)
In summer, just trim the branches that are growing upright. Do not over prune the tree during the hot summer months. You should finish pruning your cherry blossom tree latest by July to prevent winter injury from occurring. (See Reference 1)
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