Formative Pruning

Trees require a strong and viable branch structure that can support the flow of nutrients and energy reserves from the roots to the leaves and back again. One of the main objectives in the pruning of trees, therefore, is the cultivation of a functional and durable branch structure known as formative pruning. The aim of formative pruning is the establishment of a scaffold of branches capable of maintaining the health of the tree in accordance with its species-specific growth habit. Formative pruning is appropriate from the early development of saplings in a nursery through each phase in the tree’s life cycle—even into its old age.