How do I protect my trees from freezing temperatures?
Newly Planted Trees
During the winter months it is important to take time to protect trees from hard frosts and frigid temperatures. It is important to understand that trees planted with in the last 6-12 months do not have a deep root system and extra precautions are needed to protect the roots of the tree.
Newly planted trees also need regular watering, even during winter months. It is important to keep the root system warm so adding wood chip mulch around the base of the tree, about 3 inches thick, will keep the water and the natural heat from the earth near the root system of the newly planted tree.
Young trees (saplings less than a year old, 6” – 2’ tall), should be covered with a sheet or tarp that extends to the ground. Before the sheet or tarp is placed over the tree, stakes should be placed on each side of the tree and they should extend 6 to 12 inches above the tree itself. This will protect the leaves from any ice, snow or frost. This extra layer of protection also keeps the grounds heat closer to the tree and the root system.
What Do I Need to Do If My Tree Has Freeze Damage?
It is important not to prune any freeze damage from the tree until spring. Pruning a tree during the winter will expose the tree’s pulp to extreme temperatures and could result in the loss of the entire tree. Waiting until spring gives the tree time to heal itself and generate new growth from the freeze damaged area. Come spring if there is no new growth on any freeze damaged parts of your tree, proper tree pruning/trimming
will be required to remove dead branches.
If you have questions or concerns regarding protecting your newly planted trees or saplings from harsh winter temperatures please contact All About Tree Care today:
Contact All About Tree Care for help with tree issues today!
Missouri Customers Call: 816.524.3073
Kansas Customers Call: 913.663.2988
How can I protect my newly planted and existing trees from deer?
Trees are an expensive investment that homeowners plant to increase their property value as well as beautify their landscaping and create a relaxing, usable shade. Unfortunately, newly planted and unprotected trees are also sweet morsels for hungry deer.
Young tree bark is tender and sweet tasting for hungry deer after a long winter, and existing trees are perfect for rubbing the new velvet off bucks’ antlers. Also, deer are known for pawing or digging at the base of trees, as they are snacking on bark and leaves, exposing the roots. This can leave areas open to insects and disease.
Barriers, repellents and tree collars are the most effective ways to protect trees from deer. All can be completed as a Do It Yourself project or by a professional landscape company.
Repellents: - Some chemical-based repellents include:
• Deer Out
• All-Season Deer Repellant
• Deer Off
• Liquid Fence
If you prefer natural remedies try:
• A habanero solution of 6% pure habanero hot sauce and 94% water sprayed directly on the tree bark and around the base of the trees (This application should be done at least once a month).
• Raw chicken eggs mixed with water also sprayed directly onto the tree bark and around the base of the tree (This application should be done at least once a month).
• Vinegar and water solution, but be careful not to get the solution on any growing grass, it will kill it. (This application should be done at least once a month).
• Try slicing up some Irish Spring or other strong bar soap, wrap in cheese cloth and hang on branches throughout your trees. Deer do not like the smell of soap. This process needs to be done every few weeks.
• Electric Fencing, and remember to tie cloth strips to the fence for repellent application (electric fencing is predominantly used if keeping deer out of large areas, not a few trees).
• Heavy mesh like chicken coop wiring or plastic mesh fencing can be used to wrap around the trunk of the tree.
• When installing a fence, make sure to have the top at a 30° angle to keep the most aggressive jumpers at bay.
• For small trees use PVC piping large enough to fit around the trunk diameter. Cut the piping length wise; open and wrap around the trunk
• For larger trees use large drainage piping large enough to fit around the trunk diameter. Once again, cut the piping length wise and wrap around the trunk.
If you suspect that you have a deer problem, or you have seen the deer in your yard and would like more information about protecting your trees contact the highly experienced arborists from All about Tree Care to assist with your landscaping needs. 816-524-3073
How to Keep Trees Healthy During Periods of High Heat & Drought
Are your trees suffering from heat stress? Just like people experience heat stress, or heat stroke, so do trees. While you may know how to recognize signs of heat stress with people—flushed, hot red skin, a high body temperature, and so on—you may not know how to recognize the signs with your trees.
A tree experiences heat stress when there is too little rain, and the tree cannot produce the sugars it needs for growth. When a tree lacks water, it may appear wilted in an attempt to conserve water. Many of the indications that your tree is suffering from heat stress—particularly leaves that appear scorched or dead—could be mistaken for signs of disease. These are some of the signs of heat stress:
- Irregular yellowing of a tree’s interior leaves or needles
- Drooping and wilting leaves and branches
- Rust-colored spots or bumps on leaves
If you begin to notice the signs of heat stress on your trees, the best thing you can do is take action immediately. And, pay attention for the signs in the future so you can identify them earlier and be proactive in your tree care. Here are some recommendations to help your trees recover:
- Properly water your trees and plants. Watering is so important, especially for newly planted trees.
They need help in order to grow their root system. Make sure you are giving your plants enough water so that they have a water reservoir to pull from during the hot summer months. This is especially important when there are long stretches without significant rainfall—as you water plants and flowers, do not forget to also water your trees!
- For large trees, be sure to water up to the drip line which extends as far out as the trees canopy.
Also start watering several feet from the tree’s trunk. This ensures that the entire root system is receiving the water it needs to grow and expand.
- After the extreme heat has passed, observe your tree closely.
Are the leaves perking up? If not, you may need to consult a certified arborist for advice on caring for your tree.
Tree watering is a key part of tree care and it is difficult to recommend an exact amount due to the varieties of climates. But a few rules of thumb will help guide you to water your trees properly.
Watering Newly Planted Trees
For new trees, water immediately after you plant a tree.
Watering Trees During the First Two Years
During the first couple growing seasons, your newly planted tree is expending a lot of energy trying to get its roots established in the soil. Especially during the first few summers of your new trees life, it will have a difficult time dealing with heat and drought. You can make this easier by providing water and covering the soil with wood-chip mulch. Deep watering can help speed the root establishment. Deep water consists of keeping the soil moist to a depth that includes all the roots.
How Much to Water Trees and When?
Not enough water is harmful for the tree but too much water is bad as well. Over-watering is a common tree care mistake. Please note that moist is different than soggy, and you can judge this by feel. A damp soil that dries for a short period will allow adequate oxygen to permeate the soil.
As a rule of thumb your soil should be moist. Usually 30 seconds with a steady stream of water from a garden hose w/ a diffuser nozzle per tree seedling is sufficient. Mulching is also key in retaining moisture in the soil.
You can check soil moisture by using a garden trowel and inserting it into the ground to a depth of 2", and then move the blade of the trowel back and forth to create a small narrow trench. Then use your finger to touch the soil. If it is most to the touch, then they do not need water.
Watering Trees After the First Two Years
After your tree has been established in your yard for two years the roots will be established. This will allow your tree to withstand a wider range of water conditions including on its own because it has a proper root structure.
If your area constantly deals with drought you will want to consider trees listed as drought-tolerant. These trees are adapted to sites in their native habitat that regularly experience prolonged dry spells. Although they are native to drought and are more tolerant than others the first few years of life is critical to the survival of the any tree and follow the steps above will help your trees grow.
Some Drought-Tolerant Species Include:
- Thornless Honeylocust (Zones 3 to 9)
- Arizona Cypress (Zones 7 to 9)
- Japanese Zelkova (Zones 5 to 8)
- White Fir (Zones 4 to 7)
- Kentucky Coffeetree (Zones 3 to 8)
High Soil Moisture-Tolerant Species:
On the opposite side of the spectrum if your area deals with a large amount of moisture or wet conditions here are a few trees that will do better in wet conditions.
- Baldcypress (Zones 4 to 10)
- Shellbark Hickory (Zones 5 to 8)
- Red Maple (Zones 3 to 9)
- Silver Maple (Zones 3 to 9)
- Paper Birch (Zones 2 to 7)
- River Birch (Zones 4 to 9)
- Weeping Willow (Zones 6 to 8)
Contact All About Tree Care for help with tree issues today!
Missouri Customers Call: 816.524.3073 Kansas Customers Call: 913.663.2988