When the temperatures dip and the days grow shorter, you might find yourself spending less time outside.
Still, the trees around your property require attention and care to thrive, especially during the chilliest season. Learning how to take care of trees in winter can ensure that they’re healthy and looking their best when springtime rolls around.
Today, we’re sharing five important tips to keep in mind this year!
1. Prepare the Space
You know what they say about an ounce of prevention! To give your trees the greatest chance of survival during the winter, it pays to perform a few key steps while it’s still warm.
When you’re planting, stick to species that are native to your region’s specific hardiness zone. If they’re native to a zone that’s milder than yours, then there’s a chance that the cold weather could cause significant stress.
Other tips to prepare your property for winter include:
- Removing dead or fallen trees and limbs
- Promptly treating any damage
- Applying fall fertilizer to promote root growth
2. Add Mulch
Mulch can help insulate the bottom of your trees. Spread a layer out around their bases to help moderate any fluctuations in the temperature. It will also help prevent moisture loss!
One rule to remember? Don’t bring the mulch directly against the trunk, as it can encourage mice. Instead, leave about an inch of space. You can also add mulch to your garden to protect your plants from winter damage.
3. Prune and Water
You’re probably not planting trees in winter, but you can prune them! In fact, this is the ideal time to do so, as they’re currently in their inactive, or dormant stage. Trimming them up now can help prevent disease spread, plus you have a clearer view of their structure.
What about watering trees in winter?
You can continue to water any newly planted trees as long as the soil hasn’t frozen. If you live in a particularly cold region, look for seasonal thaws and give your trees a drink during those times. When you do, apply the water in a slow and gentle motion, giving it plenty of time to sink deeply into the ground instead of quickly running off.
4. Prevent Unwanted Intruders
As they feed on twigs, bark, branches and stems, many rodents can cause damage to your trees during the winter. These include:
Cut back tall grasses and shrubs near your trees to discourage nesting habitats. Take the time to get up any nearby brush piles. Finally, you can always erect physical barriers, such as plastic tree guards, to keep your youngest saplings safe.
5. Prevent Damage from Snow and Ice
Snow, ice and salt can all do a number to your trees over the winter.
Proper pruning can help protect larger trees. In addition, keep an eye on their limbs and try to knock any snow gently loose in an upward motion before it accumulates too heavily.
You can also create makeshift shelters to keep your trees as covered as possible. This is especially helpful for small or fragile trees that could break under the weight of winter weather.
Trees in Winter: Keeping Them Safe and Healthy
Winter tree care doesn’t have to be complicated. With the right steps, you can make sure yours have the solid foundation they need to grow beautiful and tall.
Taking care of trees in winter can result in vibrant, healthy spring and summer foliage. It’s worth the extra time and work, but you don’t have to do it alone.
We offer a variety of tree services, from removal and pruning to land clearing and hauling. Contact us today for a free estimate and enjoy this season, stress-free!