Fall may seem like the time of year when things begin to slow down heading into the winter months, but tree care should continue in order to protect all of your plantings including shrubbery and mature trees. Here at Carpenter Costin we want to review some of the steps you can take to care for your trees and plantings this fall.
Plant New Trees
Fall can actually be a great time to plant new trees, shrubbery, or even grass. The cooler temperatures allow for roots to take hold and plantings to experience less stress. Don’t forget if you are planting in the fall to allow for long and deep watering that allows the roots to grow downward and thus stronger.
Remove Dead Branches
Fall should be a time when homeowners take note of branches that are dead or dying to be trimmed before the brutal winter weather settles in.
Between snow storms, wind storms, and the occasional hurricane that can make its way up the coast, trees with damaged branches are especially vulnerable to breakage.
Dead or damaged branches should be trimmed and removed so that they do not fall during a storm and cause injury or damage to the property.
Keep in mind that the fall is not the best time for pruning trees as that should be done more in the spring while ornamental trees and shrubs are best done in the summer months.
Prepare for Winter
While humans have the opportunity to head indoors for the harsh New England winters or at least dress warmer, trees and shrubs are not afforded that luxury.
To avoid winter injury to ornamental shrubs and bushes as well as your mature trees it is advised to take a few last minute care steps before the ground freezes. Most arborists will tell you to give your shrubs, bushes, and trees one last watering before the ground becomes frozen. Watering before the trees and bushes go dormant can help them better tolerate winter conditions.
In addition to one last watering, ornamental shrubs and bushes should also be protected from the hazards of heavy snow, ice burn, and the potential of de-icing or salt damage.
To avoid heavy snow or damage that can occur when a storm hits our area, cover your shrubbery with burlap or a wooden structure so that piles of snow do not break branches. Salt is also another chemical hazard that can get into the soil causing issues for early spring growth.
Now that fall is in full swing and the temperatures are headed downward, it might be a good time for homeowners to take inventory of their plantings to ensure they make it safely to next spring.