Compared to selective cutting or pruning, Tree Lopping is a more drastic tree trimming method that can be employed if warranted by certain specific conditions. It usually involves removing large sections of a tree by cutting a complete branch or stem all the way back, leaving only a stub.
Considered by some to be a controversial or sometimes even harmful practice, it is in fact a technique which can be advantageous and beneficial in certain situations, but only when carried out by a certified tree surgeon or arborist. This article provides an overview of some of the situations where tree lopping might be the best tactic to use, as well as the benefits to be achieved.
- To Improve a Tree’s Overall Health
The lifespan and health of stately mature trees can often be improved and assured through judicious lopping by a skilled arborist. Where parts of the tree are in danger of dying off or becoming unstable due to disease, pest infestation, lack of light or root damage, a tree surgeon will be able to determine whether the tree as a whole can be saved. By carefully cutting back just the affected portions, this can be done in such a way that the occurrence and direction of future regrowth will be optimised, both for the health of the tree and to reduce the risk of further issues down the road.
- To Neutralise the Potential Danger of an Unstable Tree
Sections of mature trees that are hollow, damaged or diseased can become especially susceptible to high winds, heavy rain or other volatile weather conditions. Weak sections of a tree can easily break apart and crash down onto, or even right through, roofs and other structures on a property. Even worse, they can cause injury or worse to people, pets and livestock below them.
A professional arborist will use their skills and experience to thoroughly assess the health of the tree as a whole, in order to determine whether its integrity can be restored by lopping or otherwise trimming certain sections. In some cases, complete removal of an unstable tree might be the best and only option.
Trees and power lines can certainly be a deadly combination. Whenever a tree’s branches appear to be in danger of coming in contact with a live power line, you should never take any chances by attempting to remedy the situation yourself, or by hiring someone with questionable credentials to handle it for you. In such a situation, tree lopping might be the safest and most advisable course of action. Careful lopping can ensure that the immediate danger will be completely removed, and can also provide a level of comfort that the same dangerous situation will be unlikely to arise again as the tree continues to grow.
In addition to considering proper and safe clearance distances (as determined by state-wide industry guidelines), an arborist must also take into account the species of tree, the type of powerline and pole, and the sort of vegetation below the tree and in the immediate area (to assess the risk of brush fires). This is clearly a task that demands the services of a trained and experienced tree professional.
- For Aesthetics
Large trees that have never been trimmed and have grown uncontrolled for many years will often take on a straggly and unpleasant appearance. Here again, an experienced arborist can employ selective lopping techniques to improve the balanced appearance of the tree and to encourage future growth to continue in the desired amount and direction. Aside from dramatically improving the shape, size and proportions of the tree, this can also reduce the likelihood that it will ever need to undergo similar drastic trimming in future, which, although sometimes necessary, will also cause considerable trauma.
Whatever the individual situation might be which has led to considering tree lopping as a remedy, only a certified tree specialist can confidently determine if it would indeed be the best course of action, and carry it out in a safe, professional and competent manner. At All Trees Perth, each and every one of our team members has been thoroughly vetted and tested to ensure that they have the necessary skills and knowledge to provide a level of care that can ensure the continued good health and long life of each tree in the least intrusive and traumatic way possible.