Trees do not merely add to the beauty of the environment. Sometimes called the earth's "lungs," trees absorb and filter contaminants and pollutants in the air through their leaves. They also serve as a shade and are a good food source. Trees are vital to humans, animals, and the environment. How do you keep your trees healthy and thriving during the hot summer?
Hot Summers in Woodstock, Georgia
Summers in Woodstock are hot and muggy, with the hot season lasting over three months, from the last week of May until the second week of September. The temperature could go above 95 degrees Fahrenheit for over thirty days, leading to heat stress in trees.
Identifying Tree Stress and Damage
Some of the most common signs of heat stress in plants and trees when the temperature gets hot enough during the summer include:
- Drooping stems and branches
- Scorched, brown leaves that curl or wilt
- Yellowing of needles and leaves
- Oozing sap from the trunk that attracts beetles and ants
Other Causes of Tree Stress
Besides hot weather, humans can cause tree stress, though not purposely. These are the most common human behaviors that are likely to bring about stress in trees:
- Overwatering, which damages the roots
- Over Fertilizing, which damages roots and results in weak trees due to rapid growth
- Careless weed whacking or mowing that damages tree barks that could lead to disease
- Unhealthy or compromised soil surrounding your tree because of vehicular or heavy foot traffic
The Importance of Proper Tree Care in the Summer Months
To enjoy the countless benefits of trees, you need to give them tender loving care. Woodstock summers can hurt, damage, or destroy trees, so you must ensure your trees remain healthy and protected from heat stress. They must withstand the extreme heat and drought that usually come during summer. Make mulching, watering, pruning, and fertilizing trees a habit, especially during the hot season.
Effective Tree Watering
Hot summer days are brutal to trees and plants. With climate change, temperatures are even higher, so extra care goes a long way. If you want your trees to have better chances of surviving summer in Woodstock, you must keep your watering up all summer!
How much water should you use on each tree? It depends on the tree species, age, soil type, and weather. All trees, regardless of age, need supplemental watering during drought season. Still, as a general rule, young and newly planted trees need frequent watering versus well-established or older trees.
Tips for Watering Trees in Woodstock, Georgia
Efficiently and effectively watering your trees is critical to their survival during summer. Here are some tips:
- Watering trees in the evening after 6 PM and early in the morning before 9 AM are the best times for watering because the sun is low, which means less water would evaporate. Watering your trees at these times allows water to reach each tree’s root system better.
- Overwatering trees is a no-no! If the soil is soggy, then that means that you've overwatered your tree. Overwatering suffocates the roots. Let the ground become completely dry before applying more water.
- During hot months, twice-a-week watering is usually adequate.
Mulching for Tree Health
Mulching is an essential tree care step as it can help maintain moisture and reduce evaporation, keeping the area around the base of your tree moist.
Mulching regulates soil temperature, reduces soil erosion, and helps in weed control.
As mulch is an organic material, it breaks down over time, which makes it great for trees and plants, adding more nutrients to the soil and resulting in healthier and more vigorous plants and trees.
The Right Mulch for Woodstock, Georgia
It's best to use mulching material such as cedar chips, pine bark, and other hardwood mulches around tree roots and plant roots for better water retention in the soil.
Other organic mulches that tree care professionals prefer include cocoa hulls, softwood bark, and compost mixes, as they help promote more fertile soil and improve soil structure when decomposing.
Protecting Trees from Extreme Heat
Apart from watering and mulching, other steps you can take to protect your trees from extreme heat include:
- Fertilizing - fertilizers help make the soil healthy from the added nutrients, making trees healthier, which means your trees can withstand drought and heat better than trees lacking nutrients.
- Pruning - trimming or pruning is vital to proper tree care but requires knowledge, skill, and timing. You should only remove damaged, diseased, or dead branches during the hottest months. Pruning in the summer also requires extra water and fertilizer to ensure trees remain healthy.
Maintaining and caring for trees so that they thrive even in scorching months doesn't have to mean spending your whole summer doing yard work. You can do the mulching, watering, and fertilizing yourself and leave the pruning in the hands of experts!
If you need pruning or other tree services in Woodstock or the surrounding area, contact our team at (678) 679-8296 for a free estimate!