When it comes to the proper care and maintenance of your trees, it is not limited to one season; it needs to be done year round. There are probably several species of trees complimenting your landscape that are not natural inhabitants of your area. Because they are not natives, they may not be equipped to handle the environment or weather. To better care for your trees in the colder months, we at Milam’s Tree Service have comprised some tips and advice that can help all of your trees endure the winter, especially those that are not natural to the area.
Winter Tree Protection & Care
There are a few things you need to be aware of, they are: proper drainage, adequate water, mulching, wrapping, extreme weather conditions, and potential salt problems.
Drainage: Drainage is one of the most important things about your tree’s survival. During the freezing and thawing process, water expands so much so the roots can heave out of the soil. Roots exposed to the surface can suffer. Proper drainage keeps the roots secure and better protected from the elements. To ensure adequate drainage is present in the soil, remove some soil from around the tree and mix sand and compost. Replace the mixture back into your hole.
Mulching: Even Mother Nature knows the benefits of efficient mulching. As you walk through the woods you may have taken note of the ground shrouded in dead leaves, snow, fallen branches and other debris to create a natural much. The trees now have food, warmth, contained moisture and protection that will usually last the duration of the winter months. Generously lay mulch down around your trees, but do not go to close to the trunk. Animals and insects might find it a welcoming place to burrow and destroy your tree’s roots.
Plant Trees out of Rain & Wind Storm Paths: Planting your trees strategically in optimal locations helps them fight the howling winds and frigid rain fall. Position trees close enough to walls to aid as a wind block, or build temporary shelters to protect them until they are in adulthood and can withstand extreme weather.
Watering Trees: Drought-like conditions can still inflict the winter months with the drying winds, and periods of no rain. Broad-leaf evergreens, like holly or azaleas, can be easily influenced with the lack of water, causing dehydration. These trees lose a lot of their moisture through the pores underneath their leaves as it is and without replenishing their water they can suffer. If the ground freezes, tress cannot draw in any water, contributing to their dehydration. Generally speaking, most trees will reserve enough water to last the winter; if they were not able to and drought-like conditions occur, the trees will not be able to survive. Keep your trees well watered whenever the weather is cooperative to help them stay hydrated all winter long.
Wrapping Trees: Wrapping your trees can deter a lot of damage sustained by winter conditions. Young trees, and some mature trees are easily influenced by weather and frost damage is likely to do a number on your trees. The wildlife can take nibbles of the bark and such, which will also hinder your trees health. Wrap burlap around the tree trunks to protect them from wildlife and contain some warmth. Chicken wire around the burlap can provide a barrier to the trunk from local wildlife.
Pruning Trees: Pruning deciduous trees in the winter season promotes fast regrowth in the spring, as many trees are dormant during the winter. It is also easier to see the shape of deciduous trees in the winter as their leafy foliage is gone. When pruning, Milam’s Tree Service first prunes out the dead and diseased branches.