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Tree Crown Thinning - Quotes, Costs & Advice

Last updated: April 10th 2017 Expert approved crown thinning services for less

Shade trees surrounding a house are wonderful and can even lower air conditioning bills in the Summer. However, there are cases where the crown of a tree may be too dense and heavy, thus weakening the structure of the tree. This could spell disaster when a violent storm comes along and starts breaking off weak branches causing them to be flung against the house. Crown thinning may have the answer to such a dilemma.

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crown thinning
what is crown thinning?

What is Crown Thinning?

When trees become too heavy, weighed down by sick and dying branches, crown thinning professionals may be called in to remove the weak branches that may be creating potentially hazardous conditions. The tree specialists may remove weak or dead criss-crossing branches along with heavy foliage to lighten the weight of the tree’s crown. This process should allow more light to pass through the branches, reduce shading and bringing better balance to the tree. A skilled crown thinning specialist will not remove more than 1/3 of the leaf-bearing area of the crown and will keep the tree as evenly proportioned as possible.

Costs Involved With Thinning Crowns

Costs associated with crown thinning may vary based on the complexity of the job. The tree specialist may provide quotes based on the number of trees that need to be thinned, the size of the trees, whether or not they are positioned near a house or other structure and the amount of thinning that would need to be done to restore the trees to a healthy size and shape. Most quotes include carrying away the cut branches, but it is a good idea to inquire to make sure. It is important to contract with the best qualified crown thinning professional, and not just the cheapest.

 crown thinning costs
the benefits of thinning tree crowns

The Benefits of Crown Thinning

There are numerous benefits to hiring crown thinning specialists to perform the procedure on a tree including:

  • Keeping the tree free of fungus and other infections that could cause the tree to decay and die
  • Reducing the destructive effect that high winds and heavy storms could have on the tree
  • Preventing damage to a house or other structure during a hurricane, tornado or other dangerous weather
  • Helping the tree flourish and produce healthy and delicious fruit
  • Improving the tree’s overall form and structure to keep it strong and healthy

How Thinning a Crown Can Protect Your Property

Crown thinning does much more than simply protect the health of a tree and the flora below it. It can also reduce the amount of home maintenance you need and even protect your home in a storm. Fewer branches means fewer leaves to fall onto your roof and eventually into your gutter system, and it also means fewer branches to break off in a storm. Certain trees may drop sticky sap onto your home, which can attract insects that may infest your home. Crown thinning is beneficial in many ways, and you can view it as an investment in your property.

Aesthetic Considerations With Thinning Crowns

You may worry that thinning the crown of your tree will cause it to look barren and sparse. However, when you hire a professional, knowledgeable tree surgeon for all your crown thinning needs, odds are good that you'll barely notice a difference. Because crown thinning is typically only performed when the crown of the tree is too heavy, a professional can remove limbs and branches that you likely don't see from the ground. This means that your tree may look a bit thinner on top, but the overall aesthetic value will remain unchanged.

aesthetic issues with thinning a tree crown

Thinning Crowns Varies by Species

Like most other tree surgery services, thinning procedures will vary depending on the species of the tree. For example, large trees that are known to grow a hundred or more metres high will require more substantial thinning than a larger fruit tree, and evergreen trees may not handle crown thinning well at all. You should always contact a professional for advice based on the species, location, and size of the tree.

hiring professional  tree surgeons

Hiring a Professional

Do-it-yourself tree thinning can be a disaster. Inexperienced individuals who start lopping off branches may damage the tree or be injured by large falling branches. Hiring a professional is a much better plan. Skilled tree specialists know which branches to cut, where to cut, which ones to leave alone, and how many total branches to remove to successfully thin the crown of the tree while still maintaining the tree’s shape and balance. Typically hardwoods are the types of trees that are thinned most often. Some trees should not be thinned, and a knowledgeable crown thinning specialist would know when to perform the procedure and when to leave a tree alone.

Quotatis took the hassle away from me having to trawl through each company trying to find one that was suited. Mrs A.

experienced  arborists are needed

Experience Makes a Difference

Trained and experienced arborists know to look for branches that form acute V-shaped connections to the trunk of a tree. These kinds of connections form what is known as a bark wedge and they are weak and can easily be dislodged from the tree. Removing the V-shaped branch connection usually causes the remaining branch to grow stronger. Branches that form a U-shaped connection to the trunk are much sturdier and should not be removed. Trustworthy tree surgeons are typically licensed and insured. They know not to remove more than 25% to 30% of the living crown of a tree as removing too much will only weaken the tree.

Your Crown Thinning Questions Answered

By removing smaller branches from the outer crown of a tree in order to shape it and provide uniform airflow.

Crown thinning helps prevent disease and storm damage, provides an aesthetically-pleasing shape, and curbs excessive tree growth.

Any tree can be damaged by over-thinning or excessive trimming. When done right, crown thinning helps to reduce the overall weight of the crown, and helps it to shed water, snow, and wind without snapping.

The average cost of crown thinning will depend on the size of the tree and the density of the crown. For a job like this, most tree surgeons will charge by the hour, and this cost will not usually include any waste hauling or labour charges.

A crown reduction vertically shortens a tree, while thinning the crown only removes certain branches in order to make it less bulky. In many instances, a crown thinning and crown reduction are performed simultaneously to obtain the desired results.

Some of the diseases that plague trees in the UK can actually worsen in damp, dark conditions – such as those present in very lush crowns. This means that there are some cases in which crown thinning may be performed in an attempt to save a tree.

If your tree’s crown is especially thick, it can completely block sunlight. This can make your garden a very dark place, and it can be difficult to get other decorative plants to grow. A thinning procedure will remove some of the branches, which can allow more sunlight through.

When you hire a professional to take care of your crown thinning needs, you won’t be able to notice much difference in the actual visual appeal of a tree. You may notice a brighter plot, but overall, the aesthetic appeal will be much the same.

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Sample Requests For the Thinning of Tree Crowns

21 Sep Crown Thinning

We were advised a while ago to carry out thinning on a number of our trees for their longevity so would welcome free quotes for the work.

21 Sep Old Trees

We have 3 trees in our garden that have been there at least 40 years. They are very large, and we believe they are in need of being thinned out. To our knowledge, the trees have never been serviced. Please provide a quote for the work.

21 Sep Oak Maintenance

I have a large Oak in my back yard that is simply enchanting. Home to birds, squirrels and a tree house, I want to keep this oak in excellent condition. I am looking for possible thinning services? Can you please offer a quote?

20 Sep Hardwood Thinning

I have a hardwood tree that needs it's crown thinned. Please can you give me a great quote for this job as soon as possible? Thanks.

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