The time is fast approaching when those chilly winds will begin nipping, the snow will begin falling, and homeowners will be preparing their trees for winter. Big established trees should have no problems, but young trees are easily susceptible to all kinds of health threats as vulnerable saplings. Proper preventative measure will prevent serious damage and removal expenses.
Mid Summer / Early Fall
Unless you have been experiencing drought throughout the summer, try to quit watering your trees. Getting the natural amount of rainfall will help to harden young trees for the winter. Refrain from using fertilizer and other plant food. If the tree experiences a lot of new growth prior to the beginning of cold weather, those fresh parts will be extremely weak.
The watering ban should extend until the leaves fall off of the tree. After they have shed completely, resume your watering regimen. This is extremely important for evergreens, which are highly prone to water loss in the winter. Preparing trees for winter moisture loss requires weekly watering in dryer regions. Although there is often snowfall in many areas during the winter, trees are not getting as much water as it would appear.
Ensure that the entire diameter of the root base is getting at least one inch of water every week well up until freeze point. Keep in mind that a tree’s root system can extend to a significant area even up to three times larger than the diameter of the tree itself.
Around late October, remove deadwood and branches that may encourage pest infestation. Before any sort of snow begins to fly, protect young evergreens with a burlap sack and stakes to shield them from harsh winds and intense winter sun. It may be beneficial to spread a layer of mulch before the first freeze to keep moisture in throughout the winter. Proper winter protection may save your investment and your time!