If you have a large pine tree in your yard, you may be wondering what you need to do to maintain it. One tree service you may want to look into is a wind-sail reduction—also known as crown thinning. The wind-sail effect occurs in unpruned trees since their overgrowth can easily stop the wind from passing through. Read on to learn more about the benefits of this service and when it's a good time to have it done.

What Are the Main Benefits of a Wind-sail Reduction?

Your pine can look more beautiful when dead branches are removed and leaves are thinned out in the canopy. While a wind-sail reduction can improve your tree's appearance, there are other benefits.

Lower Populations of Pests

Rodents, insects, and other pests can thrive in an overgrown canopy. If the pine tree is near your house, then the branches can actually create an entry point for pests to get into your home. When a tree trimming service reduces the wind-sail, they can remove any branches that are too close to your home.

Reduced Risk of Wildfire Damage

If your large tree has overgrowth, dry pine needles can litter the base of the tree. Dry pine needles are a big problem if you live in an area with high incidences of wildfires. If your pine tree is near other trees in the yard, the overgrowth can make it that much easier for a fire in the canopy to spread to the adjacent tree.

Improved Tree Health

When a pine tree has thick overgrowth, it's easier for moisture to become trapped within the canopy. Excess moisture can leave your pine exposed to pine gall rust. Pine gall rust is a fungal disease that causes poor branch growth. Pine gall rust can cause branches to die, and it can weaken the tree enough that it could collapse under heavy snows or heavy gusts of wind.

When a tree service does a wind-sail reduction, they will use ladders, harnesses, and other tools to get to the top of the pine tree safely. They can thin the branches so moisture doesn't get trapped. They can also remove any branches that may already be infected with pine gall rust. While you may be able to spot pine gall rust on the lower branches, you need a service to spot this fungus on higher branches.

Pine gall rust can disfigure your tree. While an established pine could withstand pine gall rust, younger trees could die from the disease. It's a good idea to invest in a wind-sail reduction to prevent pine gall rust.

Are There Any Downsides to Wind-sail Reductions?

While wind-sail reductions are beneficial, there are potential risks if the task isn't completed properly. You should contact a professional tree service that is familiar with pruning and tree branch cutting. When people try to do DIY wind-sail pruning, they actually take off too many branches. This can be a problem because your pine still needs adequate foliage to get nutrients from photosynthesis. Trees are able to mature correctly because of the presence of wind. As the air currents flow through the branches, the trunk shifts, thus causing roots to grow deeper to stabilize it. So while you certainly don't want the wind-sail effect, it's important not to over-correct and go the opposite direction. If your pine tree is over-pruned and sparse, then its roots may not grow deep or strong.

In short, talk with a professional tree service to see how often and how much the tree should be pruned. Once dead or diseased branches are removed from the canopy, the service may not recommend another reduction for many years.

For more information, contact a company like Pete & Ron's Tree Service, Inc.