February 9, 2023

Pollarding timber is a pruning and woodland administration technique that you could be use for aesthetic and survival functions. This method could end in “lollipop timber”, and it could actually additionally offer you a wooden provide.

Proceed studying to be taught extra about pollarding timber.

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Every little thing You Must Know About Pollarding Timber

What Is Pollarding?

Close-Up of the top Part of a Willow Tree Just Being Pruned or Pollarded | Pollarding Trees


Do you know that the phrase “ballot” initially referred to an individual’s head? For this reason “to ballot” was once a phrase that meant “to crop the hair”.

Pollarding refers to a tree and woodland administration system that encourages the removing of the tree’s higher branches. The method includes reducing again of a tree practically to its trunk. This retains the vegetation smaller than their pure dimension and form.

Because the pollarded tree grows, a dense mass of branches or foliage seems on the tree’s high and sides. This makes the tree look considerably swollen or expanded.

Nonetheless, as soon as you start the pollarding course of, it’s a must to usually preserve the identical top of the tree by pruning.

What Is the Goal of Pollarding Timber?

Two Newly Pruned Pollard Willows | Pollarding Trees

Historically, this technique was usually practiced in Europe approach again the medieval instances primarily for 2 causes:

  • to offer grazing animals with pollard hay
  • to provide wooden pollards

These days, this system takes place globally to keep up timber at a sure top, which is principally for decorative functions.

However pollarding timber additionally present plentiful shade in agroforestry techniques.

Different sensible functions of pollarding timber embody:

  • creating daring foliage
  • limiting the highest development of timber
  • stopping timber from rising out of their bounds or their allotted house
  • preserving timber planted in parks or on streets extra compact
  • rising timber in an city surroundings the place they are often positioned beneath utility traces and avenue lights with out tangling them
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Pollarding timber additionally gives a approach to make use of wooden from the identical tree for a number of years. With this, you don’t have to chop down the tree and have solely one-time use of its wooden.

Moreover, pollarding timber nonetheless creates a yearly harvest of branches that you need to use for:

  • gas
  • boat development
  • fencing
  • baskets

Is Pollarding Good for Timber?

Row of Pollard Willows along a Small River | Pollarding Trees

Sure! Since pollarding includes interval reducing, it makes timber dwell longer.

Pollarding decreases the expansion price of timber, and it retains them in a juvenile stage. For this reason with pollarding, timber can attain higher ages. This leads to many timber surviving as historical or veteran timber.

As well as, the age of pollarded timber is definitely older than how they appear. This implies which you can’t precisely inform their age utilizing their girth, identical to what you’ll do with regular timber.

Is Pollarding the Identical as Coppicing?

Lumberjack Logger Worker in Protective Gear Cutting Firewood Timber Tree | Pollarding Trees

Pollarding timber and coppicing are each pruning methods that you could be use on totally different tree species. Chances are you’ll use these strategies to create younger stems and daring leaves.

Coppicing is a conventional technique that produces sturdy stems. This course of includes reducing timber to nearly floor stage.

Pollarding timber is like coppicing. However on this method, timber are minimize to their stump, round two meters or six toes above the bottom.

Each pollarding timber and coppicing produce stems and shoots that you could be use for:

Nonetheless, pollarding timber was once the popular technique over coppicing relating to grazed areas or wooden pastures.

It’s because coppicing was an issue for individuals who work within the woods who additionally owned livestock.

Since coppicing includes reducing of timber to close floor stage, the brand new shoots would develop as much as the identical stage of the pasture. So woodsmen opted to pollard the timber as an alternative. This fashion, the timber would develop to a top away from shopping and hungry animals.

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How Is Pollarding Performed?

Arborist Cutting a Tree with a Chainsaw | Pollarding Trees

As soon as a tree has reached a sure top, chances are you’ll begin to pollard it.

Minimize any decrease limbs in addition to crossing limbs on the tree. Ideally, go away a trunk to assist three to 5 branches. Then, minimize these branches as properly to your required size. These branches would be the ones to type a framework.

After trimming, the tree should appear to be a barren stick. However don’t worry. New shoots will quickly seem on the finish of the branches, and a crown or “pollard head” may also type.

You will need to repeat the reducing course of each few years to keep up the form of the timber. Nonetheless, the frequency of trimming is determined by why you might be pollarding.

If you wish to preserve a landscaping design or diminish the dimensions of your timber, you’ll want to pollard each two years. In the meantime, if you’ll want to have a sustainable firewood provide, pollard timber each 5 years.

But when the pollarded tree has already overgrown, we advocate that you just seek the advice of an arborist earlier than reducing the tree.

It’s because an overgrown pollard tree could develop heavy branches. Moreover, it might endure from overcrowding and ailments due to elevated humidity. Subsequently, it must endure surgical procedure to remove its giant elements.

Alternatively, chances are you’ll do the next to restore a pollarded tree:

  • Do away with weak and thin branches.
  • Attempt to cut back the size of branches to one way or the other restore the pollarded tree to a standard tree.
  • Some tree species, such because the London airplane, reply to a remedy whereby you narrow all of the branches that grew from the previous tree stump.
  • Then again, oak, ash, and hornbeam timber do finest if you retain appreciable elements of their important branches.
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Remember the fact that if you do main work in your timber, carefully monitor them to find out in the event that they require additional upkeep.

Professional Tip: At all times choose younger timber for pollarding as a result of they regrow higher and sooner than older timber.

What Is the Greatest Time to Pollard Timber?

Landscape with a Pollard Willow at Sunset | Pollarding Trees

You need to pollard a tree whereas it’s dormant. Which means that you’ll want to undertake pollarding from January to March or late winter to early spring.

As well as, fungal infections, in addition to bugs, are minimal when it’s chilly. This will preserve the timber much less vulnerable to ailments.

However there are some exceptions.

As an illustration, walnut timber are finest pollarded in July. As well as, summer time is best suited for pollarding maple timber.

Nonetheless, the expansion of latest shoots of those timber throughout this time could also be poor as a result of drought or scorch.

Which Timber Can Be Pollarded?

Long Row of Freshly Pruned Pollard Willows | Pollarding Trees

Not all timber are good candidates for pollarding. However the varieties of timber which might be efficiently pruned are the next:

  • Oak
  • Chestnut
  • Catalpa
  • Sycamore
  • Aircraft
  • Black locust
  • Hornbeam
  • Ash
  • Willow
  • Yew
  • Tulip
  • Lime
  • Beech
  • Mulberry
  • Elm

Try this video by Richard Perkins to find out about pollarding younger forests:

Pollarding timber might be helpful to your backyard for quite a lot of causes.

This technique can forestall timber from outgrowing their allotted house. It might even be mandatory for city areas the place timber could hinder wires, cables, and different non-public properties.

However extra importantly, this system means that you can regularly harvest wooden to your survival and supply meals to your livestock.

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