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Do the words crown thinning and crown reduction sound the same to you? The words thinning reduction both relate to a lessening of tree foliage, and in reality there is a distinct difference between the two procedures.
So let’s try and take the confusion out of what these procedures mean. The first thing to explain is the meaning of a crown. If you have a full tree with large limbs and thick branches, it's top is called a crown. This is also sometimes referred to as a canopy. Now that you know what a crown is, let's see what the difference between crown thinning and crown reduction is.
Crown thinning is a complex process where up to thirty per cent of a tree's structure is removed. This act is achieved by pruning a tree's secondary branches whilst keeping its size and natural structure. This practice will keep the tree from crashing down on your home during something such as a windstorm or heavy snow. Other benefits are that it will allows more light to penetrate your garden so that your plants can thrive and it also keeps the overall uniform shape of the tree while slowing its rate of growth.
Crown reduction is often performed on trees that are deemed unhealthy. Usually, it is old-growth trees that need the most attention and in order to keep enjoying their ample shade and their stately presence, crown reduction is a necessity.
It is done to take some of the weight from the tops of trees which may or may not mean reducing the tree's height. Crown reduction is normally undertaken when the tree's crown is dying. The dead-wood requires removal and is cut back to live wood so that it will bring about new growth.
Crown reduction is different from tree topping in that it is not simply lopping off the top of the tree and all the branches it contains. The top of the tree is removed, but it's performed for the purpose of reducing weight off the top. Crown reduction doesn't always equate to reducing its height, but it's a possibility.
When there is a storm, it is the crown of a tree that will feel the full force of the wind. The stronger the wind, the more likely it will cause limbs to break loose. The downforce of the wind can cause a tree to be uprooted. This is why crown reduction is so vital if a tree is close to your home or is located in an area that has high winds. The branches of a tree can twist and cause it to form cracks in its trunk. Cracks in the trunk of a tree leave it vulnerable to parasites, disease and a lack of moisture.
The good news is that crown reduction can breathe new life into an old tree. After the top is reduced, you will see a burst of new growth on lower parts of the tree. Crown reduction will extend the life of the tree, years past when it would have died if left alone.
How We Can Help
If you live in and around the Chelmsford area and would like an expert eye to come and assess your trees, then click on the call now button below. Alternatively, find out more by going to our crown thinning or crown reduction pages.