Trees in the wild are never pruned, yet they often have long healthy lives. In a natural setting, their branches develop a balance and form typical of the species.  It is when trees are brought into an urban situation that correct pruning becomes so important.  Pruning is both a skill and an art.

The best time to prune deciduous trees is when they have dropped all of their leaves and the structure of the tree is easy to see.  No Branch should be removed without reason. Common reasons are:

    1. Remove Dead, weakened, diseased or insect-damaged branches.

    2. Remove crowded or crossing limbs

    3. Eliminate hazards in the landscape such as branches in walkways or paths.

    4. Improves stability by reducing wind resistance.

    5. Control of direct growth.

 Large tree limbs over 2” should be cut in a 3-step process.  Here is good information about pruning and are instructions for proper technique.