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Cedar Tree Pruning?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by WarriorLandscaping, Apr 7, 2020.

  1. WarriorLandscaping

    WarriorLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 291

    Hey guys, not sure if this is the correct place to post a tree-related question.

    I have a client with large emerald cedars (I think), They have taken Winter damage to the tops (See pictures)

    She wants them to be trimmed down but I've noted that this can be dangerous to the tree's, especially if pruned back to deeply.

    With regards to the pictures do you think I can take off these hanging / broken branches without compromising the health of these tree's.

    Thank you




  2. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,603

    They're going to look horrible if you top them. They won't die, but they're going to be fugly.

    Tie them to each other?
    hort101 likes this.
  3. hal

    hal LawnSite Fanatic
    from Georgia
    Messages: 5,814

    Tie them like Mark said or just clip the wayward ones
  4. OP

    WarriorLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 291

    Yeah I don't want any pug fugly tree's,
    Tieing is a good idea,
    hort101 likes this.
  5. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,310

    Looks like a work of art to me! :)
  6. SilverPine

    SilverPine LawnSite Member
    Messages: 79

    Tie it for sure. Looks like it will be a bit awkward with the ladders.
    Mark Oomkes likes this.
  7. hort101

    hort101 LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from S.E. New England
    Messages: 21,440

    They look like arborvitaes
    Tie them with appropriate material
    BrandonV likes this.
  8. BrandonV

    BrandonV LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,326

    The gentleman above is correct.
    hort101 likes this.
  9. roody2333

    roody2333 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nj
    Messages: 1,068

    Unless you put a permanent tie or someone takes them off, it'll happen again and that time be larger limbs that probably snap.

    They do look like some sort of arborvitae, american? It gets confusing with those/cypresses/thuja without seeing cones, leaf close-ups.

    I think it would benefit to cut back those branches and leave the one central leader for the one alone on the lawn. I would snip about half of them, still tie them to heal, then if fills in green behind where the sections were removed, gradually take more off until there's no long branches prone to snapping.
    If you're not cutting too much off, it should fill in, especially now is a decent time and not mid-summer, early spring is best usually. The one near the house but not up close to it like the 3 others looks like 4 equal parts, so can't prune to leave a central leader, but if trained from the start might have been able.

    Not sure the mature/max height/girth of that species but the ones against the house should be maintained, but the one in the middle of the lawn you can probably just let it grow, leaving just the central leader will make it grow taller and usually just better all around regardless that it makes them more snow-proof too. If it ever gets too big to prune and want to keep it trimmed every year to grow dense and uniform,being a small conifer I think it could be topped without too much risk as long as you're not taking too much off which might never grow back upward and look like a tree with its head cut off.
  10. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,832

    Tie them as Hort101 said. Also shear the top slightly to slow down the long fast growth and do that every year. That will stiffen it up and make it harder for them to open up.
    hort101 likes this.

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