How To Cut Tree Limbs That Are Too High To Reach (5 Easy Steps!)

How to cut tree limbs that are too high to reach is a top searched query. Trees are resourceful and fun until they grow enormous and it’s paramount to trim them.

Every individual is currently planting trees. It is essential for maintaining a pollution-free, eco-friendly environment and also protects the ozone layer from depletion. The owner should know the trimming techniques in maintaining a beautiful garden and the planting information.

Proper trimming techniques not only improve the aesthetic appeal of your garden but also ensure the health and longevity of your trees.

Trimming or cutting is required when the tree branches or limbs are growing too high, dead, or in damaged condition. So let us have a brief look at how to cut tree limbs that are too high to reach with safety measures and further details on the equipment and tools.

How To Cut Tree Limbs That Are Too High To Reach?

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First, a tree cutter should have a basic idea of the tree structure, limb height, branch thickness, and strength to proceed with the cutting process. Depending on the trees, you should use tools for cutting. There are plenty of tools available in the markets, but the right one should be opted based on our requirements.

If the height of the tree limbs is too high to reach or it is packed with electric, telephone, and cable wires, then seeking the help of an arborist is recommended to avoid further risk.

  1. Tools used for cutting the tree limbs
  2. How to cut tree limbs that are too high to reach

#1 Tools Used For Cutting The Tree Limbs

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After reviewing the working methods, cutting the tree limbs is done in multiple ways, picking the most suited one. 

  1. Pole Pruner – As the name suggests, with this equipment, you can adjust the height of the pole to the length of the branch. Before initiating the process, the height of the branch should be measured with a measuring tape. In this method, reaching the high tree limbs is very easy, but one pruner will not suffice for the entire process. After knowing the height of the branch, purchase the tool as per the measurements.
  2. Pole Saw – It is one of the standard pruning tools, where it can handle branch height up to 20 feet. This tool can cut the thickness up to 1-2 inches. This tool is available in the marker with a blade and an extendable pole. We should search for alternatives for a thickness greater than 2 inches.
  3. Pocket saw with a rope– This method is most convenient for cutting the branches more significant than 20 feet in height. A strong rope should be tied to the saw. After knotting the rope, throw it to the desired branch you want to cut. Adjust the rope to keep the blade in its current cutting position. Once all the adjustments are made, you can initiate sawing the limbs.   
  4. Ladder with a saw – The rope is replaced with a ladder in this tool. Depending on the height of the limb, select the ladder. Place the ladder in a stable position and keep one person behind the ladder to hold it to minimize the risk of falling. After locating the cut position on the branch, start cutting the limbs too high to reach the ground. Formerly, check the tree for cracks and breaks.
  5. Bucket lift – This tool is used for professional use, which is very expensive. Instead of buying, better rent the lift. Using this bucket lift, cutting off the limbs to 100 meters in height is possible. 
  6. Climb using ropes and harness – If your tree is suitable for mounting, this tool can be used. In this method, the tree cutter seeks the help of rope and harness to mount and cut the required branch. Care should be taken while climbing since it may damage the tree. 

#2 How To Cut Tree Limbs That Are Too High To Reach

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After finalizing the equipment, use the 3-cut method to cut the limbs. The steps used for cutting the tree limbs are described below.

Step 1– Pick the ladder and adjust its position close to the tree trunk. Two types of ladders are available. One is extendable, and the former one is a stepladder.  Step Ladders are placed under the tree trunk, while the extendable ladder should be placed on the tree trunk and extend the ladder to the desired height.

Step 2– If the branch is within reach, use a pruning saw to cut through the bark on the underside of the limb. The incision should be about 6 inches from the collar, the joint where the branch meets the tree. At this point, merely cut deep enough to penetrate through the bark; do not attempt to remove the limb. This cut breaks the bark, preventing the falling limb onto the trunk.

Step 3– Trim a small section of the limb. If the limb is too high to reach with the pruning saw, stand on the ground and use a pole pruner or rope saw. To saw through large or tiny branches, wrap the flexible midsection of the rope saw around the top of the branch and alternately pull on each end of the rope. 

Step 4–  Continue cutting off the branch’s smaller ends until you reach the 6-inch mark.

Step 5: Make a final cut of at least two inches from the trunk with the pruning saw.

Drop Zone: Because you’re high in the tree, you have some influence over where the branch lands. You can also tie a rope to the limb and have a companion pull it in the desired direction. Always keep the area clear of people so that no one is injured by falling limbs or small bits of the limb.


It’s critical to plant trees and keep the branches trimmed. Having the most excellent tool with you when cutting branches and limbs is the best way to go. Keep the tree’s height and diameter in mind while selecting a cutting. Finally, choose a tool that works effectively and adhere to all safety precautions.

If you’re going to climb the tree, dress appropriately and be cautious. Call a specialist if the tree branches and limbs appear to be intricate.

See a previous post: Why Do Water Bugs Come Out In The Summer

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Appropriate Time For Cutting Off Branches And Limbs?

The appropriate season for cutting off tree limbs in winter. Winter is preferable to avoid diseases and pest infections due to open woods. Cutting is required to prevent the damage of the whole tree and other trees in the yard.

As safety is a significant concern, the branches or limbs should be removed unseasonably to prevent sudden fall of the branches or tree limbs. So carefully observe the structure of the tree for cracks and damage. If anything seems abnormal, start cutting the limbs with safety precautions.

What Are The Factors To Be Considered When Trimming Off The Limbs?

To ensure a safe cutting process, some safety precautions should be considered.

– Protect your head with a helmet or hats
– Comfortable clothing
– Wear eye protectors to prevent dust particles from entering the eye
– Wear face protection and protective leg shields
– Ear protectors to provide comfort to the ear from noisy
– Observe the tree for cracks before mounting
– Place below the tree should be free from people, small plants, and trees
– Use proper ropes while mounting the tree
– Closely observe the remaining branches while cutting one branch
– Proper usage of the tools

What Are The Common Mistakes In Trimming?

Mistakes are widespread in any sort of work. Similarly, the gardener encounters the below-mentioned mistakes in cutting off the limbs. Make a note of these mistakes, and don’t encounter them while working. Carefully observe the cutting tactics while seeking the help of a professional.

1. Trimming the limbs too short
2. Deserting the limbs too long
3. Improper cuts
4. Topping
5. Bad Timing
6. Over Pruning
7. Drop Area

Practical approaches to cutting the limbs are found in the video below.

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