You have to water your lawn, gardens and trees during the warmer months of summer and spring, but you mustn’t forget to do the same in winter. Yes—even the cooler months call for regular watering. And there are even more necessary seasonal tree maintenance steps in Baton Rouge, such as pruning, mulching and protecting branches from winter weather conditions. If you want to, you can do these tasks yourself, or hire a professional arborist for winter tree care and maintenance. The key here is to ensure your safety and preserve the condition of the tree that needs maintenance.
Here are five winter tree care tips that can help your trees stay happy and healthy all season long:
- Pruning is important: Many homeowners aren’t sure of the best time to prune their trees. Ideally, you should make cuts to limbs when temperatures are lower, like in winter. This is the time when trees go dormant, making it the perfect time for pruning. All mature trees can benefit from seasonal pruning, which includes removing dead, dying, diseased and damaged branches, and shaping the structure of the tree.
- Add more mulch: Adding mulch helps to retain moisture and warmth throughout the cold winter months. Organic mulch like wood chips mixed with or without leaf matter is the most ideal option. All you need to do is cover the soil beneath the tree with three to five inches of mulch. Start a few inches away from the base of the trunk and go out a couple feet from the base in all directions. There should be a circle of mulch around the tree. Be sure to create a doughnut shape, because a volcano shape will retain too much moisture and cause decay around the trunk.
- Protect trees against freezing: Your most vulnerable trees need protection against winter cold spells—especially when temperatures drop below freezing. This applies to young trees and certain tropical or subtropical trees, as they cannot tolerate temperatures below 32 degrees. Protection is as simple as covering these trees with sheets, tarps or specialty plant cloths that extend from the ground and wrap all around the tree. Use stakes, frames or something similar to reduce contact between the tree and the cover.
- Keep watering: Even though it’s cold outside during the winter months, you will have to water your trees if there’s no rain. Thoroughly water mature trees once a month or so by slowly soaking the ground around the trunk. In winter, young trees need watering every one to two weeks. It’s important to water newly-planted trees to help them recover from the stress of going through a transplant—the ideal time to transplant is in the fall.
- Observe: As winter rolls on, be on the lookout for issues with your trees. Take a close, hard look at trees after wind storms for damaged branches or loosened trunks, and watch the trees’ structures for stress from issues like a lack of water or heavy limbs.
For help with seasonal tree maintenance in Baton Rouge, don’t hesitate to contact the professional team at Allan’s Tree Service. Reach out to schedule tree service this winter!
Categorised in: Tree Maintenance
This post was written by Allan's