Japanese Maple Pruning
These are a few before & after photos of Japanese Maple tree pruning. The first two are from NW Portland, in the neighborhood below Pittock Mansion. The first pic shows the branch structure after winter pruning. The second photo is November autumn color: same tree. Keep in mind that the big Maple below is a Weeping Japanese Maple, not an upright Japanese Maple. It is exceptionally large for that type of tree, and rather old.
Another below, is from Lake Oswego, and the orchard ladder is 10' tall for scale. The Maple tree was one of 6 in a small Japanese Maples grove that received no yearly corrective pruning for at least 8 years. Showing how much improvement is possible in just a couple of hours. Sometimes trees take a few years to improve. There is a limit to the percentage of canopy that should be removed each year. In this case, improvement was rather immediate.
M. D. Vaden - Arborist
Weeping Japanese Maple | Same tree as below, but Autumn color: in November
Weeping Japanese Maple | 14' tall x 15' wide after pruning | Same as above: March
Japanese maples can grow in pots for years with yearly pruning