For the past few weeks Westcoast Tree Care has provided tree maintenance and support to the citizens of Olympia, Washington. Our customers often ask what steps they can take to help maintain the health and vitality of their trees.
We love it when our customers ask this question. General tree maintenance can be performed by any homeowner and will go a long way toward protecting that wonderful investment: your trees.
Today we provide you with general tree maintenance tips that can help you protect the health, integrity, and aesthetics of your trees.
Tree Maintenance Tips
Embrace the Concept of Preventative Tree Care
If you’ve asked what you can do to help your trees than you’ve already demonstrated the proactive attitude that is fundamental to preventative tree care. Many homeowners discover problems with their trees after experiencing issues such as insect infestations, downed limbs, or worse.
Preventative tree care seeks to avoid these costly issues by actively maintaining the health, integrity, and structure of your trees. These tree care steps include regular inspections, pruning, deadwood removal, and more.
Scheduling regular inspections of your trees is tantamount to maintaining their health and integrity. Regular inspections provide you the opportunity of early detection which can be the difference between enjoying your trees for years to come and having to have them removed.
Set a regular inspection schedule. This can be as simple as assessing your trees in the Spring and Fall. Regular inspections will give you the opportunity to evaluate the health and growth of your trees, whether pruning is necessary, the need for fertilizing, and more.
Pruning is Part of Tree Maintenance
Pruning your trees serves a variety of purposes. Fundamentally, pruning your trees will maintain their health and beauty.
Common reasons for pruning your trees include the removal of deadwood, maintaining the tree structure, removing hazardous branches and limbs, and controlling growth. While pruning your tree can have amazing benefits to its health, know that improper pruning of a tree can have disastrous effects on the integrity of the trees structure and the trees overall health.
It goes without saying, if you’re unsure of how to properly prune your trees please hire an ISA Certified Arborist such as Westcoast Tree Care for your pruning needs.
Most often, pruning is best performed during the trees dormancy period. Typically this is during the colder months after the leaves have dropped. Pruning during the dormancy period provides the tree ample time to heal, provides a reduced chance of unwanted tree growth, and gives you a better view and understanding of the tree structure.
Watering and Mulch
Other general tree maintenance steps you can take to maintain the health and vitality of your trees include maintaining a regular watering cycle and applying mulch to the tree base.
When it comes to watering, a general rule of thumb is to simply water your trees when soil moisture is low. Note that during periods of drought, watering cycles need to be increased.
Another way to increase moisture levels in your soil is to apply mulch to the base of your trees. This not only increases moisture retention but has the added benefit of providing your trees with valuable nutrients.
Apply mulch two to three inches thick around the base of your tree and taper outward. Be sure to leave at least six inches from the base of the trunk. Piling mulch against the trunk of the tree can lead to excessive moisture levels which can lead to fungus growth and disease.
The Take Away
Our customers in Olympia, Washington and throughout the Pacific Northwest often ask us what they can do to help maintain the health of their trees. Today we provided you with general tree maintenance tips that can be performed by anyone and go a long way toward protecting your valuable investment.
As always, if you’re unsure of what you’re doing please consult an ISA Certified Arborist such as Westcoast Tree Care for your tree maintenance needs. Improper pruning and other preventative tree care measures can have negative effects on your trees health, structure, and vitality.