Prune Your Magnolia Tree To Encourage Healthy Growth Next Spring

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If you moved into your home last year and were pleasantly surprised to see a magnolia tree growing on the property just to be disappointed during the spring due to the fact that very few magnolia blooms were present and that the flower petals quickly wilted and fell from the tree, overgrown branches could be to blame.

If the tree's buds did not receive ample sunlight, healthy growth may have been inhibited. Take the steps below to trim the tree and encourage healthy growth next spring. If successful, you will be greeted with an abundance of fragrant magnolia blooms that can be enjoyed for days. 

Gear Needed

Visually Assess Magnolia Branches Before Trimming Them

Tree trimming should take place during the fall or winter months because this is when magnolia trees are dormant, so you will not hinder the tree's growth cycle. Instead, you will be doing the opposite, you will be eliminating damaged or overgrown branch parts and will be reducing stress on each branch and providing the tree with a viable way to collect sunlight and moisture.

Look at the tree's branches. Look for branches that are discolored, cracked, or hanging downward. These are the branches you will want to trim. Keep in mind that you will want to remove an equal amount of overgrowth from each branch so that the magnolia tree has a uniform shape. Come spring, the branches will grow evenly and the tree will have a full, bushy appearance. 

Use Pruners And Clippers To Trim Branches

Gather up the supplies needed to trim branches and carry the items outdoors. After placing an adjustable ladder next to the tree, cover your hands with gloves to avoid puncturing your skin with sharp branches or one of the trimming tools. Use a pair of scissor pruners to trim through thin branches. Use a pair of standard tree clippers to cut through thicker branches.

If this is your first time using scissor pruners or clippers, work slowly and avoid twisting branches or pulling on them too roughly as you make each cut. The last thing you need is to damage the tree because that will defeat the whole purpose of trimming branches.

If it helps, climb down from the ladder every so often and stand back several feet so that you can look at the tree as a whole and ensure that you are cutting the branches in an even manner. Dispose of the trimmings.  Come spring, if the weather conditions are dry for several days and the soil surrounding the tree is crumbly, use a sprinkler system to water the base of the tree.