UNDATED -- It's time to start trimming and pruning your plants, and trees to get ready for the warmer months according to the University of Minnesota Extension Office.

Beth Berlin is the Extension Educator in Horticulture for the U of M. She says the cold weather actually plays into your hands to keep your plants and trees healthy through the summer.

"One of them [the reasons] is we're limiting the time the tree is still in its dormancy before it starts its growth spurt come spring. And then we're avoiding some of the disease and pest issues that we have with our trees and shrubs."

A third reason behind getting out there now to do it is you'll avoid having too much foliage to work around while pruning. Berlin says make sure you're using the right equipment while taking the task on.

"Make sure you have sharp, clean tools. Whether that's a hand pruner, lopper or a saw, just make sure it's clean and sharp, so you're making a crisp, clean cut on the plant itself."

She adds, make sure you're looking for obvious signs of disease or dead portions of the plant. Make sure you're starting with Oak trees right now, Maples too, among others. Basically, everything except for any spring blooming plants should be on the prune-to-do list.

When it comes to other tips, make sure you're staying safe Berlin says. If there's anything that you can't fully handle, don't hesitate to contact professionals, especially for larger trees that need pruning.

More From AM 1240 WJON