Like the human body, trees require regular care and check-ups to thrive. Many times, tree diseases, damage and weather-related disasters can be prevented by taking some proactive steps. So, just as you schedule doctor appointments, follow nutrition and exercise plans, and treat health issues as needed, your trees require the same attention.
Here are the top tree health management tips to keep yours in peak condition.
Tree Planting and Maintenance Tips
- Plant the right tree in the right place. Tree planting should not be taken lightly. With the help of an arborist, choose a species that will thrive in your area, then find a location that will get enough sun and have space for its full-grown canopy. Before digging, be sure it’s far enough away from your home, power lines and underground utility lines. And don’t make the common mistake of digging too deep!
- Water properly. Just like the plants around trees, you need to water your actual trees! Mature trees typically require one inch of water per week, while newer tree plantings need around four to 10 gallons each week during the first couple growing seasons.
- Mulch. Mulch helps insulate tree roots, prevent lawn mower cuts and deter dry soil, which can all lead to tree diseases. Remove any grass underneath the tree and spread 2-4 inches of mulch, being careful not to cover the base of the trunk.
- Fertilize when needed. While you want to avoid fertilizing freshly planted trees, most trees require these added nutrients regularly. Apply a slow-release fertilizer into the soil and test your soil periodically to see if anything’s missing or in short supply.
- Prune wisely. The best time to trim trees is when the tree is dormant and without leaves (if possible). In summer, focus on cleaning up and clearing out small, dead or damaged twigs. Proper trimming improves the structure and removes any deadwood holding them back.
- Schedule annual inspections. An annual checkup is essential to good health. Spotting signs of pests or tree diseases early can make all the difference. Plus, arborists can also recommend plants around trees to improve the beauty of your landscape.
This is by no means a comprehensive guide to tree health management, but it’s a great foundation for excellent care. You can count on an expert tree service to share more insight and customized advice for your specific needs.