The Bald Cypress, Taxodium distichum, is an enduring deciduous evergreen that grows in USDA hardiness zones 5 through 9. It is often grown in parks, along sidewalks and in yards. It gets between 50 and 70 feet tall. Though bald cypress trees are generally low maintenance, they may require some trimming throughout their lives. Learn how to safely prune your bald cypress by following the steps below.
First, make certain that you have the proper tools, and make sure that they are clean and very sharp. This will help to prevent damage and infection of your bald cypress. It can’t hurt to add a tree wound sealant after cutting any major areas.
You will want to remove branches that hang low to the ground, rub other parts of the tree or grown in odd directions. This should be done in late winter or early spring when there are no green leaves on the tree. Using good quality pruners, cut 1/4 inch above a bud node or branch junction. If the growth to be pruned is close to the trunk, make the cut just before where the branch meets the trunk.
Next, making sure again to use clean, sharp tools, use some small gardening pruners to remove any tender or relatively new growth. Do this in mid or late spring. The newest growth will still be green. This step shouldn’t be done unless you want to sculpt or limit the growth of your bald cypress.
Finally, be sure to remove any sagging or low hanging boughs that block walkways or parking spaces near the tree. Use a good set of loppers or an extendable pruning saw and remove the branches, making sure to stay a few inches from the trunk. You may want to consider cutting back branch tips to prevent their future encroachment on pathways.