Dogwood – Pruning

Q: We have several lanky dogwoods which are putting out small suckers below the true limbs at our second floor of our home. Can I remove them? Short of finding a monkey with pruning skills, how do I do it?

A: I once looked for a monkey with pruning skills but, failing that, I tried to train a cat to grasp pruners between her front paws. That was unsuccessful and it irritated the cat greatly. You’ll just have to buy a pole pruner and do the work yourself. Removing small branches along the trunk won’t hurt the tree.