What is Tree Crown Reduction and How Much Does it Cost?

The care that you provide the trees on your property can make a world of difference in how well they perform…and how long they live. One of those incredibly important tree services in Pennsylvania is tree crown reduction.

Depending upon the species of tree that you have, it’s wise to have tree crown reduction performed every other year to thin out the crown (aka canopy) of your tree. 

In this article, we’ll talk about why tree crown reduction is important, how it can preserve the health of your tree, and how much you can expect it to cost.

Why Does Tree Pruning Matter, Anyway?

Before we go into the specifics of crown reduction, which is one type of pruning, we want to mention the benefits of tree pruning in general.

Tree pruning is the process of removing specific branches or stems in order to benefit the tree as a whole. The two main reasons for pruning a tree are for the tree’s overall health as well as for structural purposes. 

When you prune a tree correctly, you can really preserve its health and prevent future problems. The type of pruning required is going to depend upon what the tree species is as well as what your goals are for the tree. 

Like other tree pruning techniques, crown reduction serves some specific purposes, which we will discuss next.

What is Tree Crown Reduction?

Tree crown reduction is one of several different pruning techniques that can be used to achieve specific goals. When performing crown reduction, the goal is to reduce the crown (exactly as the name implies!) to reduce the weight. 

tree care experts prepare to prune trees

When performing crown reduction it’s also important that no more than 25 percent of the tree’s canopy is removed at one time. This is critical when it comes to preserving the tree’s overall health.

A Certified Arborist will make highly selective decisions about which limbs to remove during crown reduction. This helps to reduce the stress put on a tree by heavy branches. It also decreases the risk of these heavy branches breaking and falling during a storm.

Tree Topping vs. Crown Reduction

Tree crown reduction sometimes gets confused with tree topping, which is an outdated and even dangerous practice. In tree topping, most of the tree’s top is cut off all at once. 

This is also sometimes referred to as “heading” a tree.

tree care expert prunes tree

Some homeowners are still under the false impression that this is the best way to handle a tree that has become too large for their property. They mistakenly assume it will reduce their risk of the tree falling.

In reality, tree topping can actually severely harm a tree’s health and (over time) potentially increase its risk of falling. That’s because topping can lead to decay and puts a tremendous amount of stress on the tree. It can also lead to insect and disease infestations.

Instead, if a tree is getting too big for its area and needs to be scaled back, crown reduction is the safest method.

While we’d love to tell you that no tree services in Pennsylvania still perform topping, that’s unfortunately not the case. 

tree care expert prunes tree in bucket

The vast majority of professionals are familiar with proper procedures (and understand that tree topping is outdated). But we still do see tree topping performed from time to time, which means that there are likely still some companies offering it. 

It’s important to work with a tree care professional that is only utilizing best practices when it comes to tree pruning (and other services).

The Cost of Tree Crown Reduction

If you have a tree on your property that may require this service, you might be wondering about the tree crown reduction cost.

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The cost of any tree service is inevitably impacted by a few key factors.

  • The location and accessibility of the tree
  • The size and species of the tree
  • The timing of the last pruning service

As with any service, the quote you get from one company might differ from another based on that company’s crew size and skill range. If you have a large and complicated tree, it might require a larger crew. 

tree care expert climbs flowering tree

Some professional tree services also employ Certified Arborists, which are highly skilled and well-trained professionals who have significant horticultural expertise. This is the kind of expert that you want to make critical tree decisions. But it’s important to note that not all tree companies employ Certified Arborists. 

The truth is, sometimes a company that charges less, has a less-skilled crew.

At Joshua Tree Experts, our tree crown reduction costs start at $300 and go up from there. As we mentioned above, there are various factors that can impact that cost. But when it comes to something as important as the health of your tree, it’s truly an area where you should not skimp.

Finding the Best Tree Services in Pennsylvania

When it comes to tree crown reduction or any other pruning method, you want to make sure that you have the right professional performing the work. 

There are many companies that offer tree services in Pennsylvania but don’t trust something as valuable as your trees to just anyone. You want to be sure to choose a company that truly has long-term expertise. A company that has seen a variety of problems over the years will also know from experience how to deal with them.

You also want to choose a company that works with Certified Arborists on its staff. These are highly trained individuals that are skilled at making the best decisions for your trees.

Considering the fact that any pruning service is going to help preserve the life and health of your tree, you want to be sure that you are choosing wisely.

When you choose the right company, you can feel confident that your tree care professionals are doing what’s needed to protect your investment in your property’s trees. Instead of causing future hassles and headaches, your trees will be on their way to better health.

If you have concerns about trees and shrubs on your property, we’d love the opportunity to visit with you for a free tree care service consultation. Please feel free to contact us or call us at 610-365-2200.

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