As the weather begins to cool off, you need to take certain steps to help prepare your trees for winter. This will help to minimize the stress that trees will undergo as the extreme temperatures and various weather conditions come in throughout the winter. It may seem as if your trees aren't doing much during the winter, but they are still alive and can suffer damage if they are not properly prepared and taken of. If you follow the following tips, you will reap the benefits when spring rolls around.
Tip #1: Use Mulch to Your Advantage.
During late fall or early winter, buy some mulch or make your own and apply it underneath your trees. The reason for this is to help retain moisture and to reduce temperature extremes within the soil. It doesn't take much mulch, as a thin layer of it will do. You simply need it there to act as an insulator and to provide a bit of protection for the roots of the tree.
Tip #2: Keep Your Trees Hydrated.
Just like humans, trees can get dehydrated. Much like summer droughts, winter droughts can do a lot of damage to trees, and trees need as much water during the colder months as they do during the summer months. If the weather permits, make sure to provide your trees with an occasional watering.
Believe it or not, this can be all your tree needs to stay alive. Just make sure that you only water when the trees and soil are cool rather than frozen. Otherwise, you will do more harm than good.
Tip #3: Wrap Your Tree to Prevent Damage.
If you want to try to prevent temperature damage to your trees, you can use plastic or burlap cloth and wrap it around the tree's base. You can also use a metal hardware cloth or a hard, plastic guard to try and prevent small animals and rodents from climbing up into the trees and causing branch breakage. The limbs will already be vulnerable from the cold temperatures, ice and snow accumulation, so the wrap may help prevent mechanical injuries to the tree.
If you choose to use a wrap or guard on your tree, make sure that it is removed in the spring, as this is when trees will start to grow again.
If you are interested in learning other fall tree care tips, contact a tree care service in your local vicinity. Keep in mind that fall is also a great time to get a prune in before winter hits.