Frost damage can severely affect the health of your trees. Though it might not cause long-term problems, frost damage can show throughout the subsequent spring and summer seasons.
Is it possible, even in a cold Utah winter, to protect your trees from the frost damage that’s threatening them?
Which Types Are Susceptible?
Certain types of trees are more susceptible to frost damage than others. Those that do not bloom as quickly can be highly affected by a late spring frost. While most stay dormant all winter, once the temperature starts to turn, they sprout new buds and blossoms begin to open. The trees that go through this process quickly develop a hardiness that protects them from unexpected frosts, but the types that take longer to develop are at risk of frost damage.
Some of the tree types that you can worry less about include crab apple trees, silver maples, lilacs and linden trees. These are sturdy types that don’t typically struggle with frost damage.
On the other hand, tree types that commonly have issues with frost include apple, magnolia, dogwood and cherry trees.
It Starts with Preparation
Once damage has occurred, there isn’t much you can do reverse it, but you can double up on your care of the tree in subsequent seasons, ensuring they get the necessary nourishment to bounce back. Some of the signs that low temperatures have taken a toll include dry, discolored or shriveled leaves, or cracking in the tree’s trunk.
Preventing damage in the first place is key. The better you take care of your trees, the hardier they will be. The first thing to do is ensure you’re watering your trees enough. If the temperatures are above freezing, trees should be watered every three to four weeks. When dry soil freezes, it blocks natural moisture from reaching the tree’s roots, damaging them through deprivation.
Another measure you can use to protect against frost damage is to wrap the trunks of young trees with burlap. You will need to unwrap and re-wrap trees each year, to keep them from developing a girdled trunk. You can also spread mulch around the base of the trunk to help retain moisture for the root system.
Depend on Us for Assistance
Are you concerned about the health of your trees? Whether your goal is to prevent or reduce damage or trim dead branches, your local arborist team is here to help. Rivendell Tree Experts is dedicated to providing responsive, professional service for all of your maintenance needs.
Call us today to schedule a time for us to come and assess the health of your trees close-up. We will give you a detailed quote on work before we begin and we’ll tell you how you can give your trees the hands-on attention they need, particularly if you’re trying to limit the effects of frost damage.
Winter brings lights, cheer, good will and … snow-damaged tree limbs.
When you live in an area with heavy snowfall, your trees might become a victim the next time the forecast says snow. What should you do when the storm lets up and your trees’ branches are broken and bent? Should you stand pat or take action?
We can help clear up any misconceptions on how to respond to snow-damaged tree limbs.
Assess Trees for Weaknesses Before Winter
First things first: The best way to help your trees is to shore up their weaknesses before the snow starts. When trees have areas of decay, an imbalanced root system, dead branches or their branches have a large lateral surface area, they are more susceptible to snow and ice damage.
If you aren’t sure if your trees need care, contact a certified arborist for an in-depth tree inspection. They will help you determine if any pruning or fortification is in order for trees to make it through the winter unharmed.
Feed Trees Before Dormancy
If the area you live in is prone to specific nutrient deficiencies, it can be beneficial to apply fertilizer within the dripline before dormancy sets in. Also, water within the dripline, then cover the area with thick, insulating mulch. This will help the tree’s roots retain moisture and sustain warmth throughout the upcoming winter.
Make Safety Your First Priority
When you have a downed tree limb or a branch that looks like it’s about to collapse from the weight of snow, be extremely careful. Stay away from the tree if the trunk is cracked or damaged.
Call your utility company if there are any downed power lines nearby or touching the tree. As much as you care about your trees and want to help them thrive, your safety comes first.
Don’t Remove Snow — with One Exception
In general, you shouldn’t try to remove snow and ice from tree branches. This usually causes more harm than good. However, there is one exception: light, fluffy snow. If you can easily sweep it off with a broom, it’s OK to do so with care.
Ask an Arborist How to Prune Damaged Limbs
When branches are damaged and sections are broken, it’s vital to trim the ragged edges left behind. If you don’t, you’re leaving the tree open to disease and infestation. With sharp tools, make clean cuts to remove snow-damaged tree limbs, as long as they are small enough to handle with pruning shears.
In general, leave more complex cases to certified arborists who have the equipment and the know-how to resolve the issue in a way that is best for your tree. There is an art and a science to tree pruning, and you should never opt for DIY if you don’t have an in-depth knowledge of the right practices.
Care Should Continue into Spring
Trees that sustain a significant amount of damage in the winter may benefit from a specialized care program in the spring involving extra fertilizer and water. Again, your arborist will have the best advice based on the type of tree and the extent of the damage.
Dealing with snow-damaged tree limbs isn’t always straightforward or easy, but Rivendell Tree Experts is here to help. Call today or whenever you need service or have a question!
Call an arborist today to schedule your winter pruning appointment! You may think summer is ideal for landscape maintenance, but certified arborists can prune your trees all year round. While others are waiting until the warmer months begin, your trees can get a head start on their fresh look for spring. And believe it or not, there are some unique benefits that can come from winter pruning.
Here are our top five reasons we love to prune in winter:
1. Arborists Make Accurate Cuts
Without heavy leaf coverage, it’s much easier for arborists to see the tree’s frame and the direction of each branch. This helps them make more accurate decisions on which branches to trim and which to preserve. Branches that are diseased or damaged are more easily seen.
2. Diseases and Insects Are Dormant Too
Winter is the dormant season, and the cold weather causes infectious diseases and destructive insects to die as well. Trimming branches at this time poses less of a risk. Diseases and insects are much less likely to find their way into the cut and create problems.
3. Prune Just in Time to Avoid Winter Hazards
For pruning purposes, winter is typically defined as anytime between October and March, but prioritizing the task before heavy snowfall has another benefit. That way, rotting or dead tree branches, they won’t pose a risk of breaking and damaging your home or car. Avoid winter hazards by pruning early.
4. Dormant Pruning Encourages Spring Growth
Winter pruning enhances the level of light and air exposure for the tree. This means in the spring, growth will flourish due to the tree’s expanded inner energy reserves. Winter pruning also gives the tree a chance to grow more efficiently around the wound, limiting its risk of developing diseases in the spring.
5. It Prevents Oak Wilt
Do you have oak trees on your property? Winter pruning is ideal. When their branches are trimmed, the tree emits an odor that attracts beetles that in turn cause oak wilt disease. It’s a fungal infection that can spell death to the tree, starting with leaves wilting and discoloring, and the eventual complete defoliation of the oak.
When you prune in winter, the beetles that are at the root of this disease are hibernating, making dormant pruning safest.
Should You Hire an Arborist?
You know your tree branches don’t look quite right, but are you sure about what type of cuts to make and where?
If you don’t have experience and training, consider hiring a professional to take care of the task. Rivendell Tree Experts will give your trees the best chance for superior growth next spring through practiced, detailed winter pruning.
It doesn’t sound difficult, but stump removal is one of those jobs you shouldn’t handle on your own. It takes experience, knowledge and skill to extract tree stumps smoothly.
Old tree stumps are an eyesore. They mar your landscaping and create a trip hazard. You may want yours gone, but it’s not a DIY project you should tackle without the necessary know-how.
It Requires Special Equipment
You may be able to rent a stump grinder, but do you know how to operate it? Not only is renting this machine expensive and a hassle to transport, but it takes special training to know how to use it effectively. If you have only one or two stumps to remove, it’s likely to be cheaper and easier to hire a reputable tree company than to rent a machine.
You can jump right in and start on a stump removal job, but if you don’t do a risk analysis first, you could unknowingly put yourself or your property in harm’s way. Are there any utility or plumbing lines you should watch for? Are you following best practices while operating the machinery?
Have a professional conduct a hazard assessment first. This is how arborists go about their work, and it’s much safer for everyone involved. They remove the stump with care to reduce risk.
There’s More to it Than Meets the Eye — Literally
The network of roots beneath the actual stump is another obstacle. Roots can reach far and wide, sometimes into the path of electrical wires or plumbing lines. Stump removal professionals can successfully detangle all the roots underground without threatening your home systems … or your neighbor’s.
Professionals Expedite the Process
Finally, think about the time it takes to complete the stump removal project and how quickly an arborist can get the job done. Hint: probably a couple hours. Using a professional service is much more efficient — they can remove the stump fast, with minimal mess and complications.
It’s Time to Get Rid of That Tree Stump — Call Us
Rivendell Tree Experts offers stump removal services for homeowners in Lehi, Utah, and throughout the Salt Lake and Utah Valley region. We get rid of your old tree stump in a clean, safe and efficient manner, making us a top choice for tree care. Call today to learn more about what we do.
Landscaping mistakes can have serious consequences for your trees, and subsequently for the value of your home. Tree care may look easy, but that doesn’t mean you should water, plant and mulch to your heart’s content.
Avoid tree-harming landscaping mistakes, and keep your young saplings healthy and strong.
1. Under or Over-Mulching
Have you ever piled mulch up around the base of your trees? If so, you made one of the worst landscaping mistakes, but also one of the most common. Mulching around your trees isn’t just for looks, it helps protect young trunks and keeps soil moist. Mulch is good — in moderation. But when you over-mulch, you can encourage rot and insect infestations, ultimately strangling the root system.
2. Overplanting Around the Trunk
Don’t plant quick-growing flowers or shrubs around the base of your tree — it can stifle growth and overtake soil nutrients! Allow a few feet of space between your tree and other plantings for the trunk to breathe.
3. Under or Over-Watering
Too much water is bad for your plants, grass and yes, your trees too. It’s also bad for your budget — your water bill can quickly skyrocket! If the ground around the tree is always wet and the leaves are fragile or breaking easily, overwatering is the issue.
In the desert climate of Utah, beware of under-watering as well. An under-watered tree will lose its leaves early, and the leaves that remain will be underdeveloped, brown or yellow.
4. Careless Mowing and Trimming
Keep your lawn mower away from your tree roots! String trimmers are dangerous as well. Cutting the tree makes it vulnerable to infestations and decay. It also puts the tree under stress, directing its nutrients toward repair instead of growth. Be careful with gardening machinery!
5. Planting Near Power Lines
Choosing the ideal location is vitally important before you plant a tree. Always know how tall your tree is expected to grow and the estimated radius of root growth. One of the most common landscaping mistakes is to plant new trees too close to power lines. As they grow, they will only cause problems with your utility delivery, and ultimately, you may have to prune or even remove the trees altogether.
6. Incorrect Pruning
You can’t just hack off any tree branch you want at any time of year and expect good results. Pruning is an art that’s best performed by a trained arborist. If you want to take over this task yourself, talk to a professional or study the subject beforehand — it’s vital to tree health and longevity.
Rivendell Tree Experts is the tree care company that Utah homeowners trust. We help you prevent and recover from landscaping mistakes that wreak havoc on your lawn and trees. Call us today to schedule your appointment!
Never heard of sunburned trees?
Lawn fertilizer helps homeowners get the thick, lush grass they covet. Watch any lawn fertilizer television commercial, and it’s enough to get you off the couch and to the home improvement store in minutes. One easy application and my lawn will be the best on the street? Sign me up!
Hold on one second — you have to read the fine print. Lawn fertilizer that includes weed killer is often dangerous for your trees. Applying it to the lawn above a tree’s root system could seriously harm and ultimately kill the tree.
What’s the use of green grass if all your trees are dying?
What Is Weed and Feed?
Weed and feed is the term used to describe lawn fertilizer products that allow homeowners to apply one treatment that simultaneously kills weeds and promotes grass growth. While it’s an attractive marketing prospect and an effective product, sometimes it’s too effective.
Weed and feed often contains chemicals to kill broadleaf weeds. The problem is that many deciduous trees have many of the same characteristics as broadleaf plants. Broadleaf herbicides can cause tree leaf discoloring or curling, branch death or complete tree death.
What Are Your Other Fertilization Options?
The worst time to fertilize your lawn with weed and feed is in the spring. This is when trees are working overtime to put out new shoots. Growth is easily stalled and reversed in the spring. If you wait until summer heat takes over, it might not affect your tree as greatly.
To avoid damage to your trees, change your approach. If your grass is already healthy, simply pull out individual weeds or spot-treat them, and avoid applying weed and feed above a tree’s root system.
Some roots can extend 30 to 40 feet from the tree’s trunk. If you aren’t sure how far your tree’s roots reach, talk to an arborist. They can help you identify the areas of your lawn to avoid when spreading strong chemicals.
You can also use a nontoxic, organic, weed-killing product that doesn’t have the same damaging effect due to its lack of broadleaf herbicides.
The “Perfect” Lawn Includes Healthy, Vibrant Trees
If you’ve been spreading lawn fertilizer to the detriment of your trees, the first thing you should do is thoroughly water the soil surrounding the tree. Make sure to do this multiple times a week, especially if temperatures are rising. Diluting the chemicals will help reduce their effect on the tree.
In your effort to create the perfect lawn, don’t neglect the health of your trees! Once a tree is damaged from herbicides, it can take years to reverse. Discuss your lawn fertilizer options with your trusted local arborist, Rivendell Tree Experts, before you treat your grass. We can provide helpful, safe suggestions that mitigate and help prevent tree damage.
Planting a new tree is exciting: You’re introducing a new fixture to your landscape, one that will provide a range of benefits for you and your home and add significant value to your property.
Whether you’re replacing an old, damaged tree that had to be removed or you’re planting a new tree, it takes time, care and consideration. You want your new tree to flourish, especially in the critical period — its first growing season on your land.
You must do the following four tasks to encourage healthy growth after planting a new tree.
1. Stick to a Strict Watering Schedule
The amount of water your new tree needs depends on the condition of the soil and the type of tree. At a minimum, it should be watered daily in the first two weeks after planting. This period is when it is expending the most energy to establish roots in its new home. It needs water to fuel this effort.
The soil surrounding the base should always be kept moist. But don’t confuse “moist” with “soggy.” Just as a lack of water will hurt the young tree, too much water inhibits healthy growth as well.
From weeks three to 12, you can begin moving toward watering it every two to three days. From 12 weeks on, water your young tree once a week until roots are fully established. Depending on the type of tree, this can take one and a half to nine years.
2. Spread the Right Amount of Mulch
Don’t underestimate the role of mulch. Mulch helps your tree grow in a myriad of ways, but primarily it keeps water from evaporating from the soil. This is key in dry climates like Utah’s. Mulch also helps to quell weed growth and acts as a protective layer that insulates the tree’s roots against extreme summer and winter temperatures.
It guards the tree from damage by lawn care equipment and it enhances the health of the underlying soil.
After planting a new tree, remove turf and weeds from the base of the tree and spread a 3-inch layer of organic mulch around the trunk that extends a few feet out in all directions.
3. Don’t Overdo the Pruning
Newly planted trees should not be pruned excessively, or their growth over the next year will be limited. Remove any severely damaged or diseased limbs, but consult with your arborist to ensure this trimming is minimal and completed correctly.
4. Follow Your Arborist’s Instructions
Above all else, make sure you follow your arborist’s guidelines when it comes to caring for your new tree.
Some trees may benefit from fertilization, while it’s better to hold off on fertilizing for the first year for others. Some trees may need to be staked to develop properly, while some will grow stronger without this assistance. You need a professional’s opinion to make sure you’re executing the right kind of care.
Rivendell Tree Experts is here for you. When you’re planting a new tree at your Utah home or business, call our team for guidance and hands-on help. We are the local tree experts you can count on.
A tree appraisal gives you an accurate picture of the monetary value of your trees. You might be surprised — mature trees can be worth tens of thousands of dollars.
You may need a tree appraisal as part of an estimate of your property value. You may also need a tree appraisal because a tree was damaged and removed and you have to file an insurance claim. Even if damage isn’t covered by an insurance policy, getting an appraisal can still be beneficial — the IRS allows you to deduct property damage not covered by insurance.
Four Factors to Consider
A tree appraisal must be conducted by a certified arborist. It can be a complex, detailed process, and it requires extensive expertise with tree growth and the species.
Your appraiser will consider four main factors.
Three Approaches to Use
Once data is collected, your appraiser will use one of three formulaic approaches to calculate the tree’s value, or they may use a combination of each.
Depend on an Expert
You can trust Rivendell Tree Experts to conduct swift, fair tree appraisals whenever you need them. Contact us today to set up an appointment.