Abortive tri.ing

Asked May 31, 2019, 4:14 PM EDT

I have some old upright arborvite about 20 feet high can they be trimmed down shorter or is it better to take them out and replace. Also how big of a root ball will these have they are about 20 years old

Racine County Wisconsin

1 Response

Topping (taking the top off) arborvitae (cedar) can be done, but once the strong leader has been removed the tree will no longer have a conical shape. It is best to make major cuts like this in late winter or very early spring. Cedars are fairly easy to thin or lightly prune for shape, being careful not to cut back into the older wood.