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Arborvitae Tips

Discussion in 'Tree Climbing, Pruning, Felling' started by clayslandscape, Mar 12, 2013.

  1. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,080

    Hedge trimmer over the top each Spring is simply and beautifully done... the top will continue to grow and you can quickly make it do what you want or trim it every 5 yrs or so... this is an entry way planting and to say that caring for it is tedious, seems extreme...
    As a professional scaper, it is our job to beautify the landscape and I can't see there is a problem existing, let alone start over with something better... there really is nothing better for that spot than those 2 trees that are there... there maybe items equally attractive for that spot, but not better...
  2. joshua

    joshua LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,226

    smallaxe is right you can trim those. I have properties with arbs. that get trimmed every year. Looks like and i'm saying this without being on the property and seeing them up close but you could cut off 6-8'' of the top and 4-6'' off each side. Thats what it looks like from the pictures but you would have to make that call when you look at them and see where the dead zone is. Or you can rip them out and replace them with something that won't grow as big. Your choice.
  3. New2TheGreenIndustry

    New2TheGreenIndustry LawnSite Senior Member
    from GA
    Messages: 922

    I thought we were talking about something drastic like cutting them in half....
  4. joshua

    joshua LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,226

    i wouldn't cut them in half the customer would freak! which is why i'm saying its his choice on what he wants to sell the customer on.

    All the arbs. i trim are 6' or shorter and that was the plan when they were planted.
  5. locallawncare.ca

    locallawncare.ca LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 756

    I would tie the tops back together, and then prune them afterwards, a little more on the bottom, just use your own judgement, around here those are called emerald cedars, they grow slow and conical, I like the size they need some tightening up. Hope that helps
  6. TScapes

    TScapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 452

    Smallaxe is correct. You can easily prune these, but please DO NOT use shears!!!! Make all cuts using loppers or hand pruners. Make "crotch" prunings, hiding your cuts below the foliage. It will take a little longer, but the results will be be healthier for the plant, while also maintaining their natural look. Ideally they should have been planted on the outter columns for less obstruction for pedestrian traffic. But, you have to deal with what you have. I personally would put it back on the owner or manager of the facility to make the final decision. Explain the situation and make a recommendation of removal vs pruning. It would be an easy "upsale" for you if you could provide alternative plantings for that area and present it as an alternative to pruning. Just MHO.
  7. Coffeecraver

    Coffeecraver LawnSite Senior Member
    from VA.
    Messages: 793

    This is a classic example of the wrong tree in the wrong place.
    Remove them and replant with something like Schip Laural
  8. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,080

    This actually fits in with Landscape Architectual Principles, it is the one of the perfect plantings for a situation like this... it just got overgrown, and it probably looked great for years and years, before it got too large...

    One nice thing about these plants is that they grow so slow...
    One of the problems with these plants is that they grow so slow... :)
  9. dadoorsron

    dadoorsron LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    Yes, Pruning these plants would be the right way to go about it 10 years ago. However, at the size they are at now, all you can do is pull them out. Plant a nice hedge that is easily maintained with yearly pruning or use a growth regulator like Paclobutrazol to limit the amount of pruning you need to do for 1-2 seasons.
  10. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,080

    The arborvitaes in question are NOT hedges... look again... :)

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