How to Care for Your Trees All Year Long
Year-round tree maintenance is incredibly important. The last thing you want is for the planted tree in your front yard to grow into an unkempt, mossy mess. To avoid an unruly tree, you’ll have to provide the proper nourishment and care for your tree throughout the year.
There are certain things you’ll want to keep in mind during each season. Since we have another few months of winter left, let’s start there. Winter is actually the best time of year for pruning because many leaves will have fallen from the tree during the autumn months. This makes it easier for your Oregon tree service specialist at Mr. Tree to inspect your tree’s structure and evaluate your tree’s risk of storm damage or ice damage during the unpredictable winter months. Ornamental trees should be pruned every year, whereas evergreen trees only need to be pruned once every 3 to 5 years.
In addition to pruning and inspecting your tree during wintertime, you should also mulch your tree. Mulching can be done with a variety of materials including wood chips, barks, and composts. Mulching your tree during winter will restore nutrient levels and warm the temperature of winter soil.
In spring, you’ll want to prune out any frost damage that occurred to your tree during the winter months. It’s important to remember that it’s easy to damage a tree so, again, you should contact your Oregon tree service specialist for your residential tree service needs. In addition to inspecting the tree for possible frost damage, your Mr. Tree arborist will assess your tree for any harmful pest activity. Early spring is a time when insects flourish so if you want your tree to continue flourishing in a healthy way, it’s best to have the tree inspected for any abnormal insect or pest activity.
You should also apply fertilizer to the tree. Springtime is when trees experience the most growth. In general, you should begin to apply fertilizer to the tree in early spring and continue to do so until the tree begins to grow in early May. The best way to know when to fertilize, however, is by doing a soil test. A Mr. Tree arborist can provide one for you or you may obtain a soil test kit and perform your own. A soil test should typically be performed once every few years. In the absence of a soil test, there are some other ways to determine if a tree should be fertilized. For instance, a shoot growth of less than 6 inches or a yellow color on your tree’s foliage may be good indicators that fertilizer is needed.
Also, be sure to water the tree as necessary if the spring weather is arid. A good tip for watering trees is to remember to water the tree deeply so that the soil is covered in water rather than watering more frequently with less water. But be careful not to overwater the tree. Assess the amount of seasonal rainfall by using a rain gauge, if needed, and then water your tree accordingly.
Like springtime, summer can also be a popular time of year for pests and insects to congregate. To maintain your tree’s health and protect against potentially harmful pest activity, be sure to contact an arborist specially trained and equipped in Oregon tree service. Any servicing you need to do to repair a tree’s damage will be much more expensive than preventative tree service measures.
Again, if the summer months are especially dry, you should deeply water your tree. You should also check your tree’s mulch rings. The mulch should be placed at a depth of 2 to 3 inches below the tree. Be sure to leave a few inches between the mulch and the tree’s trunk so that the tree’s base is left exposed.
Now that we’ve made our way through winter, spring, and summer with a properly cared for tree, we only have fall maintenance remaining. Like wintertime, late fall is an excellent time for pruning trees. This is also another good time to call your local arborist to assess the overall health of your tree. Fall is a particularly good time to have your tree professionally inspected because severe winter weather can cause even more damage to a structurally weak tree. Also, if you tree is not structurally sound, you run the risk of the tree being uprooted by the unpredictable winter weather. It’s better to err on the side of caution and have an arborist perform an inspection.
Your Oregon tree service specialist will determine whether your tree is at critical risk and if you should have it professionally removed. Fall is also a good time to have your arborist prune your trees of dead, diseased branches since winter will likely cause weak branches to fall. Or, as an alternative, your arborist can help you determine whether the branches need to be cabled or braced in order to provide additional support to weaker limbs.
Fall is also a good time to remove leaf beds that may have accumulated during the season. You’ll also want to fertilize and mulch your tree, as needed.
It’s important to follow these steps and attend to your tree year-round to maintain your tree’s health. When in doubt, it’s best to contact a professional. Proper upkeep of your tree will reduce maintenance costs in the long run. Luckily, we at Mr. Tree are professional and certified arborists, and trees are kind of our specialty.