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Crown thinning is carried out for the penetration of more sunlight without altering the overall shape and physical appearance of trees by removing some parts of the plant without cutting the whole tree. Pruning techniques are applied to hardwood trees involving selective removal of certain branches, buds or stems. Diseased wood and crossing branches are removed while retaining its natural shape. Crown thinning improves the health rate and growth of trees.
Crown thinning helps the trees to stand environmental stress such as extreme temperatures, wildfire, drought, and pests. The tree is pruned with reduced crown density, crown thinning increases the circulation and movement of air throughout the crown of the tree and helps in achieving ecological goals such as increasing biodiversity with trees having a larger diameter and long tree crowns increasing the seepage of light. Early trimming of trees helps in getting wider crown with an increased diameter and is stable against various environmental factors like snow and windstorm. Crown thinning involves various methods such as below, above, diameter limit, geometrical and free thinning, and removal of healthy branches of trees with very dense crowns. Thinning reduces the weight of the plant and slows the growth rate of vigorous plants.
During crown thinning it is essential to ensure that too much live growth is not removed within a frame period of a year. Crown thinning should be carefully done by the arborist instead of making larger cuts many small fine cuts can be made.