Spring Tree Care Checklist - 7 Keys to Awesome Spring Trees!

Can you feel it? The fresh morning air, the birds chirping, bright sunny days, a Sun that doesn’t disappear at 5:00 in the evening, and of course those lovely allergies beginning to flare up like mad. Yep, it’s official (at least in my book); Spring is HERE!

You know what I love most about spring time here in north Texas? The trees of course! Everything starts blooming, the sky erupts in a flurry of color, fragrance and beauty, and the outdoor activities begin! To me, spring time means that nature explodes in abundance and we can begin to see life begin again!

In celebration of this amazing time of year, I wanted to give you a quick checklist of some really important things that you can do for your trees to give them a chance to not just live, but really thrive!

So here it goes, 7 Important Spring Tree care steps to helping your trees thrive this year:

o   WATER – most folks don’t worry about watering during the winter, and for those of us in the northern parts of the country, we might have had pipes that were frozen solid anyways! Now is the PERFECT time to get back out there are start checking that irrigation system by a registered licensed irrigator to make sure everything is getting covered appropriately. It might be a good idea to have your ISA Certified Arborist join forces with your irrigator to make sure it’s working for your trees as well!

o   PRUNING – now is  the time to go all out and completely prune your trees. It’s significantly better to prune LIVING tissue during the winter when the tree is dormant. HOWEVER, this is the perfect time to prune any dead or diseased tissue as you will be able to more effectively distinguish the different between living and non-living tissue since the leaves will help you identify which one is which!

o   INSPECT – this is also an amazing time to get out there and inspect to see how good of a start your tree is having. Have a well-qualified Certified Arborist or Board Certified Master Arborist come take a look at your trees to determine if any small issues are showing up, that way you can handle them before they become big issues!

o   RAKE – in a forest, leaves, twigs, etc. get “recycled” by microorganisms and returned to the tree in the form of nutrients (we call it “Nutrient Cycling). HOWEVER, if you have a tree that has some diseases the year before, those diseases (fungus, bacterial, etc.) might have stuck around on your leaves. Getting rid of them ensures that none of the nasty stuff sticks around to come after your trees this year!

o   MULCH – unfortunately, in raking up your leaves, you ARE destroying that natural nutrient pool that the tree has to draw from. The best way to compensate for that and really give your trees a health boost is to very simply re-apply mulch around the drip line of your trees. Mulching has actually been proven to be one of the most beneficial treatment for your trees that we know of … AND it’s super cheap!

o   FERTILIZE – again, going back to the raking issue, if you don’t have some form of supplemental fertilization, your soil could be very nutrient deficient. A good fertilization program can really help to ensure your trees have the nutrients they need to thrive. But, before you just go pumping a bunch of chemicals into the ground, it's important to make sure that it's the right kind for your trees. "weed n' feed" type products typically have broad leaf killers, and guess what ... you have broad leaf trees! get with a top-notch certified arborist to make sure that your tree is getting the proper amount! 

o   CHECK YOUR SOIL! There’s an old saying in modern medicine: “prescription without diagnosis is malpractice.” The same thing applies to trees. did you know that too much Nitrogen can actually PHYSICALLY BURN your trees’ root system! This can lead to serious problems. Before you plan on feeding your trees, make sure you have a soil analysis performed for your trees to make sure you are giving them the right amount!

I hope you enjoyed this article, and for more great opportunities to learn about how your trees work so you can best care for them responsibly, please visit us on FACEBOOK

Matt Latham
“The Tree Care Ninja”
ISA Arborist #TX-3737A