5 ways to prepare your trees for winter
Snow accumulation, ice storms, high winds and fluctuating temperatures are all common causes of winter tree damage. Here are five preventive measures you can take to protect your trees from harsh weather conditions this season.
- Prune them
Pruning is an essential part of regular tree maintenance. Removing dead, diseased and damaged branches promotes tree growth and health. It also reduces the risk of branches breaking and falling during winter storms.Pruning certain trees in early autumn can allow wounds to seal before growth stops for the season.. Pay particular attention to branches that overhang buildings, walkways and parking areas. These branches are most likely to pose a safety hazard.
- Water and feed them
Help your trees top up their food and water reserves before they go dormant for the winter. Apply fertilizer and soak your trees roots before the ground freezes. Watering in autumn helps prevent winter desiccation, a type of dehydration caused by dry winds and fluctuating temperatures. Water also serves as an insulator for the tree and the soil around its roots.
- Lay down mulch
Another way to help retain soil moisture is to add a layer of mulch around the base of the trunk. Mulch also helps prevent root damage by regulating soil temperature and insulating the roots.
- Brace them
Young and weak trees often need structural reinforcement to withstand harsh winter conditions. A professional arborist can conduct a tree risk assessment to identify weak limbs. Flexible steel cables and braces will then be installed to help prevent winter storm damage. Saplings can be covered in burlap or strong cloth to protect delicate limbs from snow and ice.
- Wrap them
Use burlap or white commercial tree wrap to shield tree trunks during the winter. When sunlight warms the bark of dormant trees, it triggers the growth of new cells. These delicate cells then suffer damage, referred to as sunscald, when exposed to freezing overnight temperatures.Trees can also be harmed by de-icing salt spray from nearby roads. Sodium accumulation weakens a tree by interfering with its ability to absorb nutrients.
Tree care service in Western Canada
With more than 35 years of experience, ArborCare knows how to help your trees thrive all year long. We sell mulch and offer tree planting, pruning and removal services in Calgary, Edmonton and Vernon. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.