Top Trees to Plant under Utility Wires

Planting trees under utility wires can be difficult. In this blog post, we’ll give you some ideas as to which trees are good to plant under utility wires. They may not all be the best trees for Central Texas, so you’ll want to consult with a professional like us before attempting to plant these trees anywhere.

Amur maple

The Amur maple is an excellent small tree because of its form, foliage and fall colors. It’s a cold-hardy maple (so, it might not be right for Central Texas). It is also very adaptable. In its summer form, it has red samaras, or seed capsules. The tree is easy to grow, and its mature height will never interfere with utility lines. It has great character and appeal in any garden. Its attractiveness will distract from any utility lines.

Apple serviceberry

This is a beautiful tree with emerging leaves being a purplish color. The best of its cultivars is called Autumn Brilliance. It’s kind of a showy tree with an attractive form, foliage, and bark with good fall color. It’s a very attractive small tree with multiple seasons of interest. The better your soil is, the better the tree’s performance is. It’s best not to plant this tree directly under utility lines. Rather, you want to plant it 6-10 feet out from utility lines so as to avoid future pruning challenges.

Redbud

This is the “Oklahoma redbud.” Another version of the redbud, called the Eastern redbud, is also good to plant under utility wires, but it can be a pretty high maintenance tree. The Oklahoma redbud has deep purple flowers and lustrous shining leaves. It’s less susceptible to leaf rollers due to the leaf structure and surface texture. The waxy cuticle covering the leaf also helps prevent leaf spot disease, which can occur in other types of redbuds. This tree needs supplemental watering during periods of high heat and responds well to summer wind protection.

Kousa dogwood

Also known as the “Chinese dogwood”, this is a very attractive tree when in flower and during the fall and winter when the form of it adds interest. Chinese, or kousa, dogwood is the Rolls Royce of dogwood trees. It has lovely spring blooms, tiers of horizontal branches, fall foliage, and fruit. Its winter silhouette makes sure that you get four seasons of beauty with this tree. Again, please don’t plant this tree directly under the utility lines, but rather 6-10 feet out from them.

American soil tree

The American soil tree is a great tree for limestone soils. The rich blue-green, oval leaves turn a magnificent yellow, orange, red and reddish purple in the fall. The tree can literally take your breath away in the brief autumn period we get in Texas. The tree can grow under a lot of soil conditions – be they acid or alkaline, infertile, rocky or gravelly. This tree is best planted 6-10 feet away from utility lines.

Large-flowered magnolia

All the planting and maintenance rules that apply to the grand old Southern magnolia also apply to this diminutive relative. If you take care of the tree, it will be a beautiful addition to your landscape. It has leaves smaller than the rest of the species and remains more compact with dense foliage until it gets quite old. It’s a prolific bloomer all season so you can enjoy its beauty for a long time. This is the only cultivar of Southern Magnolia that blooms all summer long. If it’s hearty enough for your area, then you’ll have one gem of a tree.

There are more trees that are wonderful to plant under utility lines. If you have questions, please give us a call. Remember, we have tree planting services and are very happy to help you at any time.

 

Famous Trees of Texas – Burges Oak

 “When I am forever from this life,
Erect no marble shaft for me,
But plant, somewhere upon a dusty road
An acorn in my memory.”

This is the first stanza of a poem that’s attributed to Richard F. Burges, a WWI army officer, attorney, advocate and state legislator from El Paso. In 1915, Burges, a tree advocate, bought a sapling live oak from California. He planted it in his backyard. He did this against the common wisdom of the day which said that oak trees could not survive the harsh desert climate of El Paso.

Also in 1915, Burges, who was a state legislator, introduced a bill to create a new agency to govern and nurture the forests of Texas. With the support of forestry advocates such as W. Goodrich Jones, the bill passed and was made into law. Thus, the Texas Forest Service was created and it’s still in operation today.

With the same commitment Mr. Burges gave to all his causes, he nurtured his live oak to maturity. El Paso residents saw what he did and followed suit. Pretty soon, live oaks were thriving throughout the community. The Burges Oak still stands and remains a living testament to the tenacity of live oaks and the early residents of Texas.

We thank folks like Mr. Burges for believing in trees and working to improve their care throughout our state. He was an active advocate for trees and proved many people wrong. We, at Austin Tree, admire his spirit and encourage you, if you’re ever in El Paso, to go visit the Burges Oak or just enjoy the live oak trees lining the streets. You can thank Mr. Burges for his tenacity and diligence. We hope to carry on his spirit by caring for Texas trees as he would have done. We are happy to take care of your trees. Give us a call at 512-341-8888 today. We are happy to help you.

 

 

 

Matching Tree and Site, Part 2 – Site Considerations

Last week, we discussed matching tree and site with respect to adaptability and acclimation. This week, we’ll talk about site considerations. When matching tree and site, you need to think about more than just the type of tree that you are going to plant. You have to think about more than that, but what?

Tree Function

When planting trees on your property, you should think about whether they are going to enhance property values and make outdoor surroundings more pleasant. For example, a deciduous shade tree that loses leaves in the fall can provide cooling heat from summer heat and allow the winter sun to warm a home. An ornamental tree will display beautiful flowers, leaves, bark or fruit. Evergreens with dense, persistent foliage can create a windbreak or a screen for privacy. A tree that produces fruit can also provide food for wildlife or the home. Street trees can decrease the glare from the pavement, reduce runoff, filter out pollutants, and add oxygen to the air we breathe. Street trees will also improve the overall appearance of the neighborhood.

Form and Size

Selecting the right form (shape) to complement the desired function can significantly reduce maintenance costs and increase the tree’s value in the landscape. Also, a mature tree size can determine the level of benefits you will receive from the tree. Larger trees typically provide the greatest economic and environmental returns.

Depending upon site restrictions, you can chose from hundreds of form and size combinations. It can get dizzying. For example, a low, spreading tree can be planted under overhead utility lines. A narrow, columnar evergreen might provide a screen between two buildings. Large, vase-shaped trees can create an arbor over a driveway or a city street.

Site Conditions

Selecting a tree that will thrive in a given set of site conditions is the key to long-term tree survival and reduced maintenance. You must consider the following when selecting a tree:

  • Soil conditions,
  • Exposure to sun and wind,
  • Drainage,
  • Space constraints,
  • Hardiness zone,
  • Human activity,
  • And insect and disease susceptibility.

Soil Conditions

In dense urban areas and new subdivisions, soil is often disturbed, shallow, compacted and subject to drought. Most trees will suffer in these conditions without additional care. You can get soil samples from your yard tested for texture, fertility, salinity, and pH (alkalinity or acidity). The test results can determine which trees are suited to your property and may include recommendations for improving poor soil conditions.

Exposure

The amount of sunlight available will affect tree and shrub species selection for a particular location. Most woody plants require full sunlight for proper growth and flowering. Some do well in, or even prefer, light shade. There are even a few species of tree that will do well in dense shade. You should also consider wind exposure. Why? Wind can dry out soil, damage a tree crown, and uproot newly planted trees. Special maintenance such as staking or more frequent watering may be necessary to establish young trees on windy sites.

Drainage

Tree roots require oxygen to develop and thrive. If the site has poor drainage, then that limits the oxygen to the roots of the tree. This can ultimately kill a tree. If drainage is an issue on your property, you should ask us what can be done to correct the problem. We will have some suggestions for you.

Hardiness

What is hardiness? Well, it’s the tree’s ability to survive the extreme temperatures of the particular geographic region you’re planting the tree. In Texas, your tree will need to withstand extreme heat and windiness. You need a heat tolerant tree for certain. You can check with your local garden center or nursery for information on the hardiness of certain tree species for your area.

Space Constraints

There are many different factors that can limit the planting space available to a tree. These include, but are not limited to: overhead or underground utilities, pavement, buildings, other trees and visibility. The important thing to note is that you make adequate room for the tree you select to grow to maturity, both above and below ground.

Human Activity

People often overlook this factor, but it’s an important one. Why? Well, the top five causes of tree death are done by people to trees. They are soil compaction, under-watering, overwatering, vandalism, and planting the wrong tree (number one). These five factors account for more tree deaths than all insect- and disease-related tree deaths combined.

Pest Problems

Every tree has its pest problems. The severity varies geographically. These pests may or may not be life-threatening to the plant. Regardless, it’s best to select trees that area resistant to pest problems to your specific area. We can help you figure out what those trees are.

Species Selection

We know that personal preferences as well as site considerations play major roles in your species selection, or at least they should. If you take into consideration, all the factors listed above, you can help ensure that you plant trees that will grow and function as you desire.

If you need help with this process, Austin Tree Service is here for you. Give us a call at 512-341-8888. Our certified arborist can give you helpful advice and we can help plant the tree on your site. Contact us today for more information.

Matching Tree and Site, Part 1 – Adaptability and Acclimation

When you’re matching tree and site, you have to worry about some things. Next week, we’ll give you actual site considerations and logistics. This week, we’re going to talk about adaptability and acclimation. What are adaptability and acclimation?

Adaptability is the genetic ability of plants and other living organisms to adjust or accommodate to different environments while acclimation is the process by which plants and other living organisms adapt physiologically to a climate or environment different than their own. They work in conjunction with each other. One is genetic and one is physiological, but they do both deal with how a tree adjusts to a different environment.

The first thing you need to do when bringing new trees into your landscape is to consider your expectations. What purpose will your trees serve in your landscape? Are they there for privacy or beauty? How much maintenance are you willing to do? You should also decide what you don’t want from your trees. There are some things about trees you’ll want to consider when matching tree and site.

Vigor

How fast does it grow? Very vigorous trees quickly fill their allotted space and provide shade and privacy in just a few years. They tend to require frequent pruning; however, and may have brittle limbs and short life spans. Trees that grow slowly usually live longer and require less pruning.

Size

How tall and wide will the tree get? Consider this aspect carefully if you have limited space or dislike pruning. Plant a tree in an area that can accommodate its height and width. This seems simple, but many people don’t consider this as carefully as they should and they wind up with trees that are too big for the areas they set is aside for. You can always ask us before you plant a tree. We’re happy to help.

Culture

Is the tree adapted to your climate? It’s always best to get trees that are adapted to the climate as well as the sun, soil, and water conditions at the proposed planting site. You can have trees acclimatize and adapt to the area, but it’s much easier if the tree is already predisposed to the conditions of the area you are going to place it in. It will do much better.

Now, trees are amazing organisms. Make sure you get ones that are well-suited to your site. That will give the tree the best chance to survive and be a part of your landscape for a long time. While it’s true that many trees can adapt to a different climate, it’s not ideal. We try to suggest native trees whenever possible. They’re really your best bet. For more information, feel free to ask questions on our Facebook page. We’ll be happy to have someone answer them for you.

 

How to Select A Nursery Tree

Part of good tree care starts with selection of a good tree. When you’re at the nursery, you want to keep certain things in mind. Remember, there are advantages of selecting good quality nursery trees. A good quality tree is more likely to survive, establish more quickly and live longer in your landscape. Choosing a good quality tree at a nursery can reduce the likelihood of limb failure from structural defects. Be a smart buyer and evaluate your tree carefully.

Many arborists would consider a container-grown tree as their first choice. Although this nursery-grown tree might be a little more expensive, it has a very good survival rate with minimal care. The roots in the container are 100% intact and the tree has not been stressed by having been dug up from the ground. Container grown trees are usually smaller than balled & burlapped trees, which we’ll talk about in a bit. That’s a good thing because smaller is better to ensure that the tree can spread out its roots and get on with the business of growing once you plant it in your landscape at home.

Where there is less of a tree to feed, the roots can expend energy on growing themselves. By allowing the roots to grow, you’ll see a beautiful crown in the years to come. When shopping for nursery trees, you should be picky. Check out several nurseries, both large and small. You’ll want to pay attention to some factors.

With a balled & burlapped tree (B&B), you should carefully access the quality of roots before planting. These young trees were grown from seed in one location and then years later were dug up and wrapped with burlap prior to the season they were shipped to the nursery. In the process, some roots have been severed. If not sold the first season, roots will continue to grow and are forced into a circle under the burlap. They often girdle the trunk or become contorted or tangled. If you do want a B&B tree, make sure it’s a good one.

What should you look for in nursery trees?

Whether they’re container-grown or B&B, you should look for the following things:

  • Little to no scarring on the trunk from the limbs to the root flare,
  • Minimal dead branches throughout the crown (hopefully, there are none),
  • An overall healthy appearance – avoid a beat-up looking tree,
  • No blotches or holes on the leaves (these are usually caused by pests or disease),
  • A strong central trunk as the central feature. Avoid a double trunk. Remember that branches can be pruned over time to balance the appearance or the weight of the tree,
  • For B&B, the string or wire around the trunk is loose enough to dig your finger underneath it,
  • There are no obvious roots already circling the trunk at the soil level (gently examine with your fingers). For a B&B tree, check underneath the collar of the burlap/string. Prod it a bit with your finger to notice whether the trunk is smooth and flares out naturally without interruption.

Once you’ve selected your nursery tree, take care with the trunk of the tree as you move it around. It can take a little wear and tear, but you should avoid nicks and cuts and scraping with tools or hard surfaces. You’ll want to limit how much recovery and healing the tree will need to focus on so it can redirect its energy to the roots. You’ll also want to protect the tree from the wind on the ride home. It’s best to secure it in the back of a truck if you can to avoid any damage. The tree can handle being on its side for a bit if you must put it into an SUV or sedan. Make sure you bring a tarp so you can avoid messy cleanup later.

Now that you know what to look for in a tree at a nursery, we encourage you to go out and get a tree for yourself. If you still have questions, feel free to call us at 512-341-8888. We are happy to give you solid advice on choosing trees at local nurseries.

Famous Trees of Texas – Burnt Oak

The Burnt Oak is located near the east bank of the Salado Creek at a point midway between two of the most important early roads in Texas. These are the old Goliad Road and the famous Gonzales Road. This ancient live oak saw a lot of history during the Texas Revolution. We know it was witness to many of the events that took place during that difficult time.

Shortly after the first battle of the Texas Revolution ended at Gonzales on October 2, 1835, the newly-formed Texas army, led by Stephen F. Austin, left Gonzales and headed for San Antonio to drive General Prefecto de Cos and his Mexican troops out of Texas. Austin and his force of about 600 men camped on Salado Creek, which is just a few miles east of San Antonio. They were there on October 20th, waiting for reinforcements.

The Texas Army camp is believed to have been close to the Burnt Oak, which is less than a mile from the Old Gonzales Road. This is the route Austin and his men were most likely to have followed. While encamped at the Burnt Oak, the Texas Army had multiple skirmishes with Mexican patrols.

Beneath the spreading limbs of this tree, which towers over fifty feet and has a girth of twenty-two feet, one can almost smell the cooking fires and the sweat of the men and horses as they rushed to meet their foes in Texas’ struggle for Independence.

This tree bore witness to many things that we can only imagine. We learn about some of them in our history classes in this great state. If only the Burnt Oak could talk, what could it tell us of this fascinating period in Texas’ history? You can visit the Burnt Oak today. It’s located on the site of the former Pecan Valley Golf Course, near the thirteenth hole.

For more of Texas’ famous trees, stay tuned to our blog. We often update and educate you about them. If you have questions about your tree, please call us at 512-341-8888. We care about all trees at Austin Tree Service, Inc.

 

Nutrition for Trees

You have trees. You want them to have proper nutrition, but how do you make sure that happens? Well, first, you need a little bit of an understanding of a tree’s natural habitat and how it obtains its mineral nutrients. Trees are built to thrive in nature. They draw life from nutrient dense soil, plentiful water and interactions with wildlife. Growing trees in an urban environment may be a little difficult, but it is by no means impossible. People do it all the time.

To help with your gaps in knowledge, you should consider consulting with our certified arborist to develop a nutrient management program for your trees. You should also be willing to apply supplements as needed. We, at Austin Tree, can really help you decide what the best nutrition for your trees should be.

Fertility Management

A regular application of fertilizer might be necessary to ensure that your trees have adequate nutrition. Fertilizers may be natural or synthetic. However, they must aim to provide trees with proper nutrients. The common objectives of fertilization should be:

  • To overcome a visible nutrient deficiency,
  • To eliminate a deficiency that’s not obviously visible but that was detected through soil or foliar analysis,
  • To increase vegetative growth, flowering or fruiting,
  • And to increase the vitality of the plant.

Fertilizer and Soil pH Levels

Most professional arborist practice ‘prescription fertilization’, which means that they only apply nutrients that are found to be deficient. Why? Liberal fertilization can ruin your soil’s pH balance. That is not good for your tree at all. An unbalanced pH will affect the availability of many nutrients. We know that nutrients are vital to a tree’s health, but they should never be added if they compromise your soil’s pH levels. To avoid this problem, measure your soil’s pH level before you apply fertilizer or consult us.

Measuring pH Levels

The pH scale measures how acidic or basic a substance is. It ranges from 0 to 14 with 7 being the neutral value. A pH level less than 7 is acidic, while a pH greater than 7 is basic. Homeowners can take a soil sample and send it to their local university cooperative extension service. Your best bet is to call us to perform a soil test. (You can visit this website to learn how to take a soil sample.) We can make custom recommendations based on the results of the soil sample analysis. Please note that pH levels can change over time, so be sure to conduct follow-up tests and adjust your soil accordingly.

Choosing a Fertilizer

Professional tree care services have access to slow-release fertilizers or can tell you where to get them. These are formulated for your tree’s health. Often, professional slow-release fertilizers reduce the need for repeated treatments over the course of the growing season. When choosing an appropriate fertilizer for trees, you need to have a fertilizer with the following qualities:

  • Features at least 50% slow-release,
  • Has a salt-index of less than 50 (salt is not good for tree health),
  • And does not have high ratios of potassium and phosphorous. Trees don’t like 10-10-10 fertilizers.

Fertilizer Application Methods

Once you’ve gone ahead and selected your fertilizer, it’s time to apply it. Fertilizer should be applied prior to soil prior to planting. As your tree grows, you’ll need to develop alternate methods for fertilizer application.

Surface Application – This works best when there’s no turf or ground cover over the roots. Liquid surface application can be made using a variety of spray equipment. To achieve an even distribution of fertilizer, a flooding tip or water breaker nozzle is preferred for surface application. Dry fertilizer can be used but needs to be watered-in. Do not use surface applications where runoff can occur.

Subsurface Application – This method requires you to drill holes 2-4” wide to a depth of 4-8” and pouring a specific amount of fertilizer into each hole. There should be at least 2 inches between the top of the fertilizer and the surface of the soil. The fertilizer should be equally distributed among all holes. Drill holes in a grid pattern, with holes spaced 12 to 36 inches apart. This method is labor-intensive and can damage roots so it shouldn’t be your go-to fertilizer application. Professional tree companies like us can provide a subsurface liquid injection with slow-release fertilizer as an alternative.

Foliar & Trunk Application – You can apply a fertilizer to foliage, or it can be injected directly into the tree. Foliar spray or trunk injections should not be your first course of action. They should be reserved for rare cases when soil application is not effective or practical to apply. This is an advanced application and is best done by a professional.

Application Amount

If you correctly select and apply a slow-release fertilizer formulated for your tree, you should only need to apply 2 to 4 pounds of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet of application. The total application for a growing season should not exceed 6 pounds of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet.

Now, we know that nutrition for trees is not an exact science, but an expert opinion can be invaluable. We hope you’ll trust us at Austin Tree Service to provide that expert opinion. We want to keep your trees healthy and well fed. Give us a call today at 512-341-8888.

 

Why is Proper Water Drainage Necessary to Protect Trees

You need proper water drainage. It’s necessary to protect your trees. Without good water drainage, a tree can slowly drown. It can take just a few days or maybe a few years, but it will happen. The tree without good water drainage will die from a lack of oxygen and nutrients. Waterlogged soils prevent aeration of plant roots and create susceptibility to diseases such as root rot. If you can correct your water drainage problems during lawn installation or tree planting, then you may just save your tree.

Percolation Test

Before you plant a tree, you should evaluate the proposed planting area by performing a percolation test. What’s that you may ask? Well, percolation refers to how quickly water drains through the soil. To test your lawn’s percolation, dig a few holes within the potential root area of the mature tree – generally inside of and just beyond the canopy of the tree. Measure the rate of water drainage. You should make the holes between 18 to 36 inches deep and 6 to 12 inches wide. About three holes will provide thorough evaluation of the site. Fill the holes with water and allow the water to completely drain out of the holes before refilling with water to the tops of the holes. Measure the water drainage every hour. Percolation at the rate of 1 to 2 inches per hour indicates good water drainage.

Soil Compaction

Lawns around new construction are often shallow and compacted from foot traffic and heavy equipment. You should amend your soil to improve tilth and water drainage by incorporating 1 to 2 inches of organic matter such as peat moss or compost into the top 4 to 6 inches of soil. Cultivate your soil prior to and after the addition of these amendments to facilitate mixing them with the existing soil. Organic matter provides both moisture retention and better water drainage through the creation of larger soil pores.

Drainage Chimney

When poor water drainage is due to a hardpan or impervious layer under your topsoil, drainage chimneys can correct the problem. With a posthole digger, dig 8 to 12 inches wide holes that are deep enough to break through the compacted layer into the porous soil. Fill the holes with gravel. The spacing of the drainage chimney is site-specific and depends on the degree of waterlogging you find. Begin with evenly spaced chimneys just outside the dripline of the tree. Add more drainage chimneys until you’ve corrected the problem.

French Drain

You can install a French drain to move water away from a low-lying area. You don’t want your trees to get waterlogged as this can lead to diseases such as root rot. Begin building the French drain within the dripline of your tree and dig deep enough to get below the root area. You will then excavate a trench leading away from the tree to a lower level, using a slope of 3 inches per 25 linear feet. The width of the trench should be at least 6 inches. You can put 4-inch-diameter permeable pipe in the bottom of the trench to help with water drainage. Then, fill the trench with gravel and rock.

Of course, we hope you don’t need to take extreme measures to ensure that your tree has proper water drainage. We encourage you to think before you plant and to know your soil and your situation. A tree has the best chance of surviving when its environment provides for proper water drainage naturally. If you need help in deciding where to plant your tree, we are happy to provide it. Give us a call at 512-341-8888 today for more information. We’re Austin Tree Service and we want all your trees to be healthy.

How to Care for your New Tree

Fall and winter are the best time to plant trees since they don’t suffer from transplant shock as much as summer planted trees. Trees need the opportunity to grow roots before being subjected to summer heat and dryness. In this blog post, we will attempt to outline the primary maintenance considerations for planting and growing trees.

Fertilizing

During the first growing season, don’t fertilize with high nitrogen fertilizer. Use root stimulators (monthly during growing season) or slow release organic fertilizer at half the recommended rate. During the second growing season, fertilize 3-4 times a year using a slow release fertilizer.

Never use an herbicide containing fertilizer anywhere near the tree’s root system!

Pruning

A properly dug and planted tree needs no pruning except to remove broken branches and growth faults (crossing branches and downward growing).

Lower branches should be left on the tree as long as possible. After the first year, no more than 1 whirl of limbs should be removed each year. The use of pruning paints (except on oak trees) is not recommended.

Watering and Mulching

Water the newly planted tree until the hole is soaked. This will saturate the roots. Water, as needed, for at least 18 months by placing a soaker hose around the base of the tree and slowly (several hours) saturate the area. Do not depend on a sprinkler system to do the job. Usually you need to water when the soil has dried to a depth of 4-6 inches. An easy way to test soil wetness is by probing with an 18-inch piece of iron rebar. If the rebar is wet or muddy, do not water. If the probe comes out dry or damp on the end, it’s time to water. During a hot, dry summer, check the soil every 4-5 days. It is equally important that you do not overwater a native or adapted tree as that could lead to disease.

Place mulch over the area of disturbed earth, leaving a few bare inches around the trunk.  Mulch helps soil retain moisture while also preventing soil compaction. Please keep lawnmowers, etc. away from the root area. During the first year, add mulch 3-4 times during the year.

These are some basic rules for how to care for your new tree. If you have any more questions, please contact our office at 512-341-8888. We are always ready to help you understand how to care for your new tree.

Practicing Water Conservation with Your Trees

You are environmentally conscious. You want to know how to practice water conservation while keeping your trees healthy. In this article, we’ll focus on how to water trees at all stages of their lives and give you tips for practicing water conservation.

Watering newly planted trees

When trees are first planted, most of their roots are located inside the original root ball. Therefore, the tree should be watered in a way that encourages growth outside of the root ball. The goal is to encourage the establishment of roots in the soil. So, with a newly planted tree, you should water the soil under the canopy. This will keep the root ball and the surrounding soil moist enough to boost healthy growth. In moderate climates, you should do this twice a week. You should increase to three times a week when the weather is hot and dry. In the case of a steady rain shower, you can count that as one day of watering. When rain occurs, it’s the best way for you to conserve water while still ensuring that the root ball gets the moisture it needs to grow.

Watering established trees

The growing season for trees is late spring to early summer. It can take two growing seasons for a tree to become fully established. Once this happens, a tree’s water requirements change. The tree needs less frequent watering. The technique to deliver the water is adjusted as well. For established trees, you will want to water in a circular motion around the dripline. The dripline is the wide band around the outer reaches of the canopy. An established tree should be watered several feet around its dripline to ensure that roots, which have grown past the dripline at this point, are getting the water that they need.

When it comes to water conservation while irrigating established trees, here are two valuable tips:

  1. Soak the entire area under the canopy. Allowing the water to soak deep into the soil near the roots is preferable to spraying the surface. Soaking the soil when watering trees will reduce the frequency of watering the trees.
  2. Avoid watering the tree trunk. Too much water on the trunk or the area directly adjacent to the trunk can increase the risks of tree rot and other diseases. Having a drip system installed can keep the water deep in the soil where it belongs – and it can deliver the preferred soaking method described above.

Water conservation when watering trees requires that you water smart, not often. It’s not hard to conserve water when you water trees. Follow our tips and you will be well on your way to doing just that. You can irrigate your trees with a low amount of water. It will keep them healthy and strong. For more information on water conservation, visit our blog. You can also call us at 512-341-8888 for more information.