When it comes to properly caring for your trees, they aren’t a lot different from humans! Young humans need more intensive care in the first years of their lives, and once health is well established, most of us just need routine care. Then, once we get older, we might start to have more health problems.
So, as with humans, you might already know that your older trees are more prone disease or damage. Likewise, younger trees need a bit more care and attention to get them started on the right track. But if you follow these steps carefully, you will enjoy a healthy tree for many years to come, and only routine maintenance will be needed.
So, how do you get a young tree started?
The first step is to plant the tree in the right place. Most will appreciate a sunny spot in the yard, not too close to larger trees that will pose an obstacle to growth. And of course, you want to consider the tree’s predicted adult size, and avoid planting it where the roots will disturb foundations, sidewalks, patios or driveways. Consider, also, that you don’t want limbs touching your house or hanging over your roof one day.
Water. Once planted, remember to offer the tree individualized care based on its species. It will probably need frequent watering until its roots are well established. Watch for signs of pooling underneath the tree, which can indicate over-watering.
Keep it clean. Regularly clean up debris around your young tree, such as excess leaves, fallen limbs, or dropped fruit. As you clean around your tree, observe its trunk and limbs for signs of disease. When caught early in a young tree’s life, many tree diseases can be reversed.
Mulch. A good layer of mulch (about three to four inches thick) around the bottom of the tree will help to retain moisture from watering, and prevent competition from grass and weeds. However, you should pull the mulch away from the trunk of the tree, to prevent excess heat and moisture from harming it.
Pruning. Finally, remember to correctly prune your young tree on a regular basis. Removing dead or sickly limbs can keep your tree healthy, and help it grow into an aesthetically pleasing shape.
We can help with that last part. Give us a call, and we can advise you on the correct times of year to prune young trees, and help you tree stay healthy as it grows.