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Urban Forester: Proactive Pruning Helps Downtown Trees Remain Robust, Healthy 
The City's Urban Forestry Division is proactively pruning hundreds of downtown trees.

Knoxville’s trees provide bountiful benefits - aesthetic beauty; summer shade; increased property values; lowered carbon dioxide levels. They're amazing assets.

But throughout downtown, many mature trees are slightly overgrown. They're growing into sight lines, obscuring signs, and starting to obstruct traffic.

Hundreds of City-owned trees are in need of pruning in the downtown area, and the Urban Forestry Division experts will be carefully working on them intermittently throughout the summer months and into the fall.

And if the tree pruners do their jobs well, employing a gentle touch, it's likely few people will even notice. That's a good thing, says Kasey Krouse, the City’s Urban Forester.

“The work being done is the same type of work I’d be proud to have done in my own backyard," Krouse says. "The funny thing about pruning is that if you do it properly, no one notices.

“In the past, we might have done a lot of work, but it hasn’t always been focused on preventative maintenance, and it hasn’t always been proactive prunings to help the long-term health of the tree. This is going to increase the tree’s life expectancy.”

Krouse says “proactive pruning” is a lot like mowing grass on a set schedule. It’s smarter and more efficient than zigzagging crews around the city to deal with tree trimmings on an emergency basis, and it decreases the number of urgent problems while improving tree health.

Once pruned, Krouse says the trees will be good to go another 6-7 years before they need to be serviced again.

"Pruning will help increase the robustness of the trees so they will continue to grow healthily and make Knoxville a place people, businesses and visitors want to be,” he says.

Work has started on Summit Hill Drive. There are no anticipated road closures or traffic hindrances aside from an occasional lane closure.

Regarding the particular tree photographed on Summit Hill Drive (below), the crew removed some branches so the red light could be seen clearly by approaching motorists.

- Communications Intern Riley Mosby

City crews prune trees along Summitt Hill Drive.

City crews prune trees along Summitt Hill Drive.

Posted by evreeland On 12 July, 2016 at 9:42 AM