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Tree Lopping vs Tree Pruning

What is the difference between tree lopping and tree pruning?

When caring for the trees in their garden, many homeowners are left wondering what the difference between tree lopping and tree pruning is. People often confuse the two terms – while they are both related to tree maintenance, they are different methods required for separate reasons. These main differences are as follows:

  • Lopping is the trimming of tree branches to reduce and modify the size of the tree
  • Pruning helps to protect trees against disease to aid health for a long life


Diseased or damaged branches are just extra weight on a tree and should be removed to preserve the health of the tree and encourage growth. When pruning a tree, it’s important to pay close attention to any branches growing inward, as well as crossing branches which can move in the wind, creating friction and causing them to break off.

Compared with tree lopping, which can involve the removal of sizeable tree branches, pruning also tends to cover more minor work, such as shearing water sprouts and small branches.

Trimming a Tall Tree

As discussed in one of our previous articles, pruning trees:

  • Stimulates new growth
  • Enhances fruit production
  • Protects against tree related diseases
  • Removes dangerous branches to improve safety
  • Improves the look of garden
  • Provides remedial work following weather damage

When it comes to the different pruning techniques, the following methods are often used to maintain mature trees:

These three methods are performed on different areas of the tree for a variety of reasons, such as removing dangerous deadwood and allowing light to travel through the crown. You can read more about this by looking at this blog post.


Tree lopping is used to modify the shape of the tree through the careful cutting of branches to train growth in a certain direction. It focuses on removing damaged sections of a tree that no longer grow to encourage new growth and longevity.

Artemis Tree Services trimming the branches of a tree

Enlisting the help of an experienced tree lopper will ensure the structure of the tree is looked after through specialist techniques so the beauty of the tree isn’t impacted. While lopping a tree can enhance its overall appearance, there are some instances where this should be avoided as removing too many leaves can limit access to much-needed nutrients and weaken the tree. In turn, this can open the tree up to diseases and parasites.

What should I consider when tree pruning or tree lopping?

When it comes to carrying out any tree maintenance, safety is paramount. Hiring an experienced, reputable arborist will ensure all work is carried out in line with the relevant regulations for complete safety. Not only will this approach aid growth and protect against tree related diseases, but it will also safeguard your property and others surrounding you while the procedure is in operation.

Another important consideration is the legal side of tree maintenance, so it’s imperative to seek advice for the laws surrounding the trees on your property prior to any major work. Take a look at our article covering the laws around trees on your property to find out more.

Artemis Tree Services

As mentioned, calling upon the expertise of an accredited tree company for your maintenance needs ensures all bases are covered. As leading specialists in tree cutting, pruning and lopping, here at Artemis Tree Services we transform the outdoor areas of properties throughout Rickmansworth, Watford and the wider London area with our services.

For quality workmanship, competitive prices and excellent customer service, contact us today.


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