What Is the Difference Between Lopping and Topping a Tree?

Tree care professionals will lop a tree before they will ever top it. Whilst lopping involves vertically cutting the large side branches of a tree, topping entails horizontally cutting the crown of the tree through the primary stems. When a tree trimmer tops a tree, he or she is often using an inappropriate pruning method.

Therefore, tree lopping in Perth, WA is accepted whilst topping is not considered a good technique amongst tree care specialists. The wounds that remain after topping are frequently slow to close as well, making the tree more vulnerable to attacks by insects and fungal deterioration. In either case, the infestation or decay can spread to the trunk, eventually killing the tree.

Why Topping Is Bad for a Tree

To someone outside of the tree care profession, topping may appear to be reliable in reducing a tree’s height. However, topping may remove from 50% to 100% of the leaf-bearing crown. Because the leaves support tree health, topping hurts much more than it helps. That is why professional tree trimmers know that lopping is a better pruning solution.

Because certain cuts can alter the growth of trees, no branch should be removed without considering the reason first. Pruning is normally done to improve a tree’s shape, remove hazardous and dead branches, and to increase the air flow and light. When arborists prune mature trees, they do so to make corrections or prevent infestation or disease.

Balancing Out a Landscape

Other reasons may entail balancing out a landscape or clearing a property. Routine pruning, however, is done to diseased or dead limbs and can be done in any season. However, wounds close more easily if pruning is done before the growth flush of plants in the spring. Pruning cuts should be placed just outside the tree’s branch collar. The branch collar contains tissue of a parent branch or the trunk and therefore should not be removed or damaged.

For instance, if a trunk collars grows out on a diseased limb, the cut for the diseased limb should be made beyond the collar. Experienced tree surgeons know that they should never make cut in the collar. They also know that certain processes such as lopping, cleaning, thinning, or raising are necessary. For example, cleaning involves removing dying or diseased limbs from a tree’s crown. Thinning involves selective branch removals to improve air flow, light penetration, and the tree’s overall structure and form.

Raising removes a tree’s lower branches so a clearance can be provided for pedestrians, vehicles, and buildings. Lopping involves trimming different tree sections. As with topping, this practice is not fully endorsed. However, unlike topping, sometimes it is necessary to lop a tree, especially if the tree is too big to cut down.



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