Deciding When to Prune Avocado Trees

  • Apr 22, 2013

Deciding when to prune avocado trees depends on the desire result. Pruning in spring is used to invigorate the trees and encourage new growth, while pruning in winter is used to devigorate the trees, control tree size and shape.

General timing principles for pruning avocado trees are:

  • In California, most pruning takes place in winter – January and February.
  • Best time to cut back is in spring in order to achieve good regrowth.
  • Pruning between January and May promotes shoot-flush during fruit set, early fruit development through August and delays leaf hardening.
  • Leaf hardening causes avocado thrips to move to the fruit; therefore, certain pruning times may increase availability of new leaves that avocado thrips feed on, possibly increasing the Thrips population.
  • The timing of summer pruning affects the length of regrowth and, ultimately, increases tree size.