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Sanitation of Palm Tree Pruning Tools

Palm tree diseases are often transmitted from palm to palm via leaf pruning tools. Equipment used to remove leaves from an infected palm (chainsaw, lopper, pruning shear, handsaw, etc.) will have fungal infested leaf material (wood dust, plant sap) on the blades. If the equipment is not cleaned and disinfected, the next palm pruned by this equipment will be exposed to this fungal infested material.


Palms should be pruned with clean, disinfected tools. Either a new handsaw or a clean disinfected tool should be used for each individual palm. Pruning should be limited to once a year and restricted to removal of only dead or dying leaves. Severe pruning, such as “hurricane cuts” or “pineapple cuts” weakens trees and increases the risk of disease transmission.


Brush the tool blades clean of debris before placing in the disinfecting solution. For chainsaws, it is recommended that they be taken apart and both the chain and bar soaked.  By having multiple pruning tools, one can be soaking in the disinfectant solution while the other tool is used for pruning. The solution should be replaced at lease every ten trees or every two hours. Rinse tools with clean water before pruning. One recommended solution is household bleach 25% (1 part bleach plus 3 parts water). For professional service call Vulcan pest Control, we keep our tools clean and ready for service.

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