Acceptable Tree Lopping Methods

When you say tree lopping, the meaning differs for an arborist. It is a term generally used for a huge number of arboriculture activities. The question, ‘Do you lop trees?’ may be associated with questions such as:

• Do you cut branches?
• Do you prune trees?
• Do you remove trees?
• Do you make trees smaller?

Basically, tree lopping has a more technical and specific meaning to a trained arborist. Lopping can stand for something that a professional are taught not to practice, as it can cause harm to trees. So when a professional is asked if they lop trees, they need to determine first what way or how ‘lopping’ is used before they provide their answer.

Acceptable forms of tree lopping

There are two specialised forms that are accepted in the community of arboriculture, and these are pollarding and hedging.


This is a specialised form of pruning that involves pruning or cutting off regrowth at required intervals. This usually occurs at intervals of a year or two. If the interval is extended, the danger of branch failure increases.

It is important that you understand that this form is only acceptable for a young tree specially selected to get this treatment.

Pollarding is a process that can be used to manage the risk connected with a larger tree that was previously lopped.

There are species of trees that can undergo pollarding, examples of which are:

• Rubinia Mop Top
• Manchurian Pear
• Crepe Myrtle


This can be new to most people who do not know that hedging is a form of lopping. When you are cutting hedges you are cutting stems in between the branch unions.

This is considered as an acceptable form or practice due to the way the hedges are kept.

Hedges generally are trimmed or pruned every 6 months or after a year or two. The frequent trimming prevents new shoots to fail under their weight or grow out of control.

Needless to say, just like any practices, tree lopping has its own purpose. It is only necessary that this is performed by professionals to avoid placing the trees at risk. Learn more about it here!