Quick Tip: Felling a Small Tree

Whether you are clearing a site for new construction or it has become necessary to cut down a tree on your property for safety reasons, follow these steps to get the job done right.

By Bob Vila | Updated Feb 7, 2018 11:58 AM

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Here’s a helpful tip you can use when you need to cut down a small tree. Make sure you wear proper safety gear and make three simple cuts. Make your first cut at a slight angle, no more than two thirds into the tree. Make a second cut to form a wedge. Then make a final cut on the opposite side, cutting into the wedge from above. Cut carefully and watch for the wind direction. The tree will fall safely away from you.

Caution: Be advised that a permit may be required, as in some areas environmental regulations dictate whether or not a tree can be cut down legally. If you are inexperienced with tree felling—especially if there are any roads, power lines, or buildings nearby—hire a professional.

For more on trees and shrubs, consider:

How To: Plant an Apple Tree
Bob Vila Radio: Shrub Success
Boxwoods: Maintaining Structure in Your Garden