As the frost edges closer and closer, now is the time to check up on our trees before they go to rest for the winter. Are they prepared for the cold, and more importantly: what timelines for treecare are the most important during the fall season?
Pruning trees makes them more resilient to the cold, and dead branches can be removed anytime of the year since no live tissue is affected. However, bigger pruning jobs should be done after the leaves fall to increase visibility of tree structure, and pests and diseases, but not too late in the season so they have enough time to heal before winter. The one exception to this is our beloved evergreens, which are dormant in late winter/early spring.
Recommended pruning months: October-November.
Planning on installing a new tree? Yes, you can still plant it in the fall, but we recommend no later than mid-October. This gives the new tree a chance to establish roots before the ground freezes.
Recommended months: August- mid-October.
Using composted materials (mulch) helps prevent damage to root systems throughout the winter by helping them retain water and creating a small protective barrier above the roots. However, waiting until after the first frost is recommended. If mulch is laid before the frost hits, it can negatively impact the process of soil freezing (according to experts with The Morton Arboretum in Illinois).
Recommended months: October-November
Myth-Busting: We’ve heard the myth that you stop watering your trees in the fall. Not true! The dry, brisk air calls for continual watering to prevent root damage and to give them a good spring start when they thaw.
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