Winter Tree Care: Tips for the Season
Winter approaches, and the time comes to tend to our gardens, our yards, and our fields so that they may last through the months of gray skies, cold, and rain. In need of a few winter tree care tips? Then you’ve come to the right place. We live and work in the Pacific Northwest, too. We’ve got enough winter tree care tips to last a lifetime.
Not all trees need help; they’ve evolved over many years to be able to withstand the elements. But more ornamental trees, fruit trees, and other trees that we plant in our yards for their beauty may be less prepared for winter. This blog post is for those types of trees.
At Inexpensive Tree Care, we’ve been providing expert, full-service tree care for about as long as a lifetime. We’re here to help, so if you have any questions about winter tree care, let our certified arborists know!
Pruning and clearing away dead or damaged branches helps prevent decay. It also sets the tree up for healthy and robust growth.
Prune overgrown limbs in the winter. This will help them recover quickly in the spring. Plus, they won’t become falling hazards when weighed down over time by possible snow and ice. It’s also a good idea to remove fallen leaves from beneath trees that are susceptible to fungal disease.
Avoid pruning in the fall, since that may make most trees more likely to accrue fungi. Late winter is usually the best time to prune trees; they’re dormant and will be ready to sprout new growth in the spring.
Pruning helps trees maintain a full look. If possible, prune during a warmer winter spell. Super cold weather plus pruning can harm delicate trees.
Winter is also the time for fruit tree trimming. Remember, though: Pruning and trimming requires an expert touch. Contact Inexpensive Tree Care if you have any concerns or doubts.
Young trees may need additional help, such as reinforcing their limbs to bear the weight of snow and ice. For more info on this particular topic as it applies to maples, see here.
One big thing to remember if you’re interested in newly planted trees, such as those maple saplings: Plant it in the fall after it has lost its leaves.
Large temperature swings can place stress on trees and shrubs. If the winter weather is unpredictable and the temps go up and down drastically, keep an eye on your tree branches and trunks for signs of cracking or splitting.
To prep for this, consider wrapping the tree bark of younger trees to insulate them from the cold temperatures and extreme fluctuations between hot and cold.
In the early winter, consider laying down a thick layer of mulch (preferably organic) at the base of your trees. This will hinder moisture loss and reduce runoff in areas where moisture is at a premium in winter months.
Things To Look For Pre-Winter
Check your trees for the following before winter begins:
- Cracks in large branches
- Cracks or hollows in tree trunks
- Decay or evidence of disease (including mushrooms or fungi)
- Extreme leaning
- Branches that hang over buildings or power lines
- Branches that hang over areas where vehicles are parked
As always, call the tree experts at Inexpensive Tree Care for all your winter pruning, trimming, tree removal, and stump grinding needs. We can help you protect trees, especially young or small trees, from days when the ground freezes, there’s no sun, and wind thrashes them back and forth.
Whether you live above or below the snow line, we can also advise you on de-icing, tree wraps, plastic tree guards, and other winter tree care tools.
Just let us know! We look forward to speaking with you.