What Is Tree Topping and How Does It Affect Your Trees?

what is tree topping

Your tree can sometimes grow too tall for your liking. When this happens, the first instinct tree owners have is topping it. However, while this is standard practice, it does more harm than good.

What is tree topping, and in what ways does it affect your trees? This article will answer this and more questions. It will also share the alternatives to topping that Chapel Hill tree service providers recommend.

What Is Tree Topping?

Not everyone wants their trees to grow tall. For years, such tree owners have used tree topping as a solution.

What is tree topping? It is the practice of reducing the size of a tree by removing the branches from its top half. Some even choose to remove the tree’s whole canopy.

Tree owners top trees for various reasons. In most cases, most people do it because the tree’s continued growth can interfere with power lines. Some use it to “fix” trees that have become too large for the property.

While these are all important issues to address, using tree topping to do so can leave your tree in a worse situation.

How Does Tree Topping Hurt Trees?

Tree topping negatively affects your trees, leaving them with bare, unstable, weakly attached branches. As a result, the practice creates the following problems.

Limited Food Source

Your tree’s leaves are a crucial part of the photosynthesis process. However, during topping, your tree can lose its entire leafy canopy, which will impact its food production. In extreme cases, the tree could even starve to death.

Increases Chances of Limb Failure

After topping, your tree might try to compensate by sprouting new branches as quickly as possible. However, due to the speed of their growth, these branches don’t have time to gain the strength they need. This reduced strength increases the risk of these branches breaking during storms.

Increases Risk of Decay

Your tree might be unable to close the wounds topping leaves behind. Before long, your tree’s wood tissues could start decaying. This provides pests and diseases the perfect opportunity to attack the tree and cause further decay.

Topping Alternatives to Consider

Just because tree topping is harmful doesn’t mean you should let your tree grow out of control. You still have alternative options you can try out.

One of the best alternatives is regular professional structural pruning. This option not only helps you reduce your tree’s height but also helps you keep your tree healthy. However, it is vital that you consult a certified arborist and let them handle the task.

Professional Tree Services in Chapel Hill, NC

You might have heard your neighbors talking about it, and you are wondering, “What is tree topping, and how will it affect my trees?” Now you know. As common as it is, it’s best to opt for the available alternatives.Are you looking for a company that can offer the solutions and emergency tree services you need? Call J&D Tree Pros today at (919) 467-7997 for your free estimate.

Get A Free Estimate

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.


Contact Us Today for More Info!

(919) 467-7997

Call Now Button