Another advantage of dormant pruning is that it's easier to make pruning decisions without leaves.
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The best time to prune depends on the species of the tree and the time of year. The best time to prune trees in Minnesota is between late fall and spring.
Prune apple trees, including flowering crabapples, mountain ash, hawthorns and shrub cotoneasters in late winter (February-early April). Spring or summer pruning increases the chances for infection and spread of the bacterial disease fireblight.
Autumn or early winter pruning is more likely to result in drying and die-back at pruning sites. Dec 14, When To Trim Your Trees & Shrubs Late winter and early spring are great times to prune most plants in general. Pruning trees or shrubs just before entering winter will end up leaving an open wound throughout the winter which can lead to desiccation damage and winter kill.
To keep trees' health intact, the safest time to trim is during the late dormant season in winter, typically between the months of February and early April.
Because deciduous trees are bare at this time of year, gardeners can easily see the branches to make cuts.