Prune an Holm Oak: [Importance, Time, Tools, Considerations and Steps]

Holm oaks are tall trees that tend to grow in areas with temperate climates. Their pruning is one of the most important care that must be given to them because they grow a lot and their crown can become quite heavy.

It is a kind of evergreen but it is able to withstand mild winters, giving the necessary shade for summer days.

In this article we are going to dedicate ourselves to reviewing everything that has to do with this subject of pruning holm oaks, so if it is of your interest, come with us.

Why prune holm oaks?

The main reason for pruning an oak is related to the control of the tree’s crown. In general, it is recommended that holm oaks be planted in a wide space where their branches do not collide with buildings or other trees .

Quercus Ilex (Holly Oak) – Plant

But almost always it extends so much that it causes problems around this issue and it is necessary then to reduce the number of branches. On the other hand, a considerable weight is created in the glass that could carry a risk and it will be necessary to lower it a little. 

In some cases it is necessary to work on it to reduce parts that are in poor condition, although in general it is not advisable to prune if you are very ill.

When is it better to prune holm oaks?

Holm oak pruning should be carried out at the end of winter , when the plant begins to awaken from its winter rest.

In this way, the warmth that progressively reaches the environment will serve to restore its flow of internal sap and it will recover soon.

Pruning during the summer or fall can pose a health risk that will be compromised by disproportionate loss of sap through wounds.

What tools should we use when pruning holm oaks?

The size of the holm oaks means that strong tools are needed to work their branches. Large garden shears are useful for the lower parts and those whose structure is not so thick.

AIRAJ Three-Piece Garden Pruning Shears, 84cm Retractable Pruning Shears, 61cm Hedge Trimmer, 19cm Lightweight Pruning Shears, Best Choice for Professional Gardening Tools


ACE 3 Pairs of Garden Eden Gloves EN388 – Gardening Gloves and for Working the Garden Soil – Gloves by Travail – Ideal for Rose Bushes and Flower Beds

You will also need a saw, preferably an electric one, to work the highest and thickest parts. The height of the holm oaks implies making use of a ladder that facilitates access as high as possible.

Einhell GH-EC 1835 -Electric chainsaw (1800W, cutting length: 325 mm, cutting speed: 13.5m / s, 7800rpm, OREGON quality bar and chain) (ref. 4501710)


Bosch – Protective garden glasses with case

Finally, it is worth working with a healing cream for the branches that are thick to help them heal faster.

Healing paste for pruning Masti-Cort Flower 5kgs. Sealing wounds from pruning and grafting for trees

It is important to note that all tools that will have direct contact with wounds must be disinfected and sharpened.

What considerations should we take into account when pruning holm oaks?

Before starting to cut branches, it is essential to establish a mental route of what will be done , so that everything runs in an organized manner. For this, it is necessary to observe the tree carefully and identify which are the branches that will have to be eliminated in a compulsory way and in what order it will be done.

RWS 10 Quercus ilex seeds, oak, oak immergrüne, ideal as bonsai, Holm oak

The normal thing is to start from those that are more towards the outside and go reaching the corresponding internal branches. Checking the final structure you want the tree to have is also a good idea because that will make it easier for you to make decisions faster as you work.

How to prune holm oaks without damaging the tree?

For the holm oak to be well pruned and problems are not generated regarding this procedure, it is necessary to comply with the following recommendations:

  1. First cut all the branches that are not being used by the tree, whether they are sick, weak, dry or withered. Adhering to this will help to clear the glass and will also add a plus in terms of its good appearance.
  2. Eliminate part of the branches that are more extensive and, therefore, are taking up much more space. Here you have to consider the aesthetic element of the glass, so it will be ideal to make it look as spherical as possible.
  3. Identify the suckers that have been born between the trunk and the branches that will be established in the tree. It is necessary to consider that these suckers rob the tree of energy and prevent it from looking healthy and vigorous. On the other hand, if they are allowed to grow, they are capable of significantly damaging the structure of the tree.
  4. Clear some branches that are too low to free the trunk of the tree . This is a species that does very well with a clear trunk and a higher crown, so it is worth a try. However, it is optional.

With good planning and the use of the recommended tools, your task of pruning the oak will go smoothly.

In the end, when we have a tree with these characteristics, what we are looking for is precisely that it is in perfect condition, especially before the arrival of spring .

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