Monkey puzzle pruning

Discussion in 'Araucariaceae' started by Unregistered, Aug 14, 2005.

  1. Can any body tell me if and if so what time of year can I take off the lower branches of my Monkey puzzle , they have not gone brown yet but over 5' long and they are ripping me to shreads.
    Many thanks
    John Carrington
  2. Nitchwick

    Nitchwick Member

    Likes Received:
    Portland OR
    Long story short: What I have heard is that the trees are sensitive to having their roots disturbed but in my experience they are resilient about disturbance in their branches.

    My anecdotal evidence:

    We just had our very old big female monkey puzzle pruned of all its dead branches last month. The tree guy wore climbing gear (soft shoes and a harness, like a rock climber. No spikes) and cut off only the brown branches with a pull saw on the end of a pole. He took off hundreds of brown branches. We helped pile them for dumping and those branches were dead as dead can be, so my guess is that those can be cut any time of year without harming the tree. The tree looks a lot better now and we can see light through the branches and there are lots of new green branches visible.

    Re pruning the green branches: our tree overhangs a sidewalk. Many of the branches hang very low. Passersby enjoy the opportunity to touch the branches, but we don't want them raking anyone over the head, so we just trim the bottom green branches a couple of feet over my head on the sidewalk and people can reach the low green branches that are allowed to hang over the yard. We do this willy-nilly, at any time of the year that the branches get low enough to hurt somebody. Our tree is doing great.

    Another experience we have is that the power company has pruned big chunks from the upper branches and (while unnattractive) this has not harmed the liveliness of the tree. The power company does not give a rat's tail about whether or not it's the right time of year for the tree before they start hacking away, and the tree seems to take it very well.

    So I think you can prune with confidence, particularly the dead branches.

  3. Many thanks Nitchwick now I can prune in confidence that I won't harm the tree and earn the wrath of 'she who must be obeyed'.


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