Planted Young Trees This Fall? 3 Tips To Protect Them From The Cold Winter
If you planted young trees this fall, they will not make it through the winter if you do not prepare them first. To ensure they do stay alive, below are three tips on what you need to do to keep them safe during the cold winter.
Take Care of the Roots
One of the most important things to do is to care for the roots of the trees. This is where the main growth comes from and if the roots die so will the trees. They need to have adequate water to get through the dirt to the roots. If you live in a cold climate and the ground freezes much of the winter, make sure you provide water to the trees each time the ground thaws so the water can get down to the roots.
You also need to put two to three inches of mulch around the trees. Do not put the mulch up against the trunks, however, as the mulch will suffocate the trees. Instead, pull the much a few inches from the base of the trunks.
Mulch is important as it protects the roots from freezing. Mulch also provides insulation to the soil and slows down water loss from the soil.
Stake the Trees
If the trees are either top heavy or are planted in a windy area in your yard, you should stake each tree. If you do not do this, the tree trunk will sway back and forth while it is windy, which would cause damage to the trunk. If the trunk is not very large the tree could also break.
You can purchase tree stakes at garden supply stores. These stakes are generally made of a highly durable plastic. This is because plastic holds up well against cold temperatures and wetness.
Protect the Trunk from Pests
There are many pests that will easily eat through a young tree trunk, such as voles, rabbits, rodents, etc. If these pests eat much of the bark, then the trees will likely die.
You can purchase pellets to spread around each tree that are made to repel pests. These pellets do have to be reapplied after each rain or snowfall.
A better solution is to put a tree guard around each tree. This barricades the trunk, and rodents will not be able to get close to the trees. These tree guards are made from a heavy-duty plastic. You can also use wire cages to put around the trees. The tree guards or wire cages should be high above the snow line. This is because, if you get a lot of snow, many rodents can simply sit on the snow to reach the bark to chew on it.
Talk with a tree service company about your young trees and they can give you more tips on how to get them through the winter.