Trees add curb appeal to a home or business, and their roots keep the soil intact. However, maintaining healthy trees requires regular checkups and preventative care like pruning and fertilization.
When selecting a professional to handle tree care, ask about their certification and experience. Look for Tree Service Round Rock when working near power lines.
The soil in your yard plays a major role in the health of the trees in it. Soil testing is an important part of tree care and helps you make informed decisions about what type of fertilizers and amendments your trees need to stay healthy.
Soil tests analyze the chemical and physical properties of the soil. They can determine if your soil is structurally stable and help you identify any contaminants in the soil that could be harmful to plants or humans. Soil tests can also determine if your soil is suitable for construction projects. Soil engineers will use these tests before, during, and after the construction process to ensure that the site is suitable for the project’s requirements.
A soil test will provide valuable information that can help you manage your crops and maximize your farm’s profitability. The results of a soil test will help you arrive at the best crop and site-specific balanced fertilization program to maintain soil productivity and improve your crops’ yields.
When performing a soil sample, take the soil from multiple locations to get an accurate picture of the average condition of your entire farm. Avoid wet spots, the compost pile, animal urine areas, brush piles, and sites where trash has been burned. Once you’ve collected your samples, combine them into a plastic bucket and mix them well. Avoid using a bucket that has been galvanized, as the zinc can skew the results of your soil tests.
Soil testing is also a good way to assess the overall nutrient status of your soil. It can help you make a better estimate of the amount of fertilizer you need to apply, and will help prevent over-fertilization, which can cause damage to your trees.
It’s a good idea to perform soil testing every few years, and more often if you notice signs of nutrient deficiency or toxicity in your plants. A soil test will help you determine if you need to amend the pH of your soil and what nutrients are needed to increase its nutrient content.
Trees can be susceptible to a variety of pests and diseases that can threaten their health. These problems may appear as discoloration on the leaves or branches, wilting, or a thinning crown. A thorough diagnosis by a trained arborist is often the first step in identifying a problem and finding an appropriate treatment.
Hundreds of insect species damage the leaves, stems, and fruit of trees and shrubs, as well as the roots, flowers, and fruits of landscape plants. Not all insects cause damage, however; many are beneficial pollinators or predators of harmful insects. Bartlett’s team is trained to identify beneficial insects and mites, and devise effective management programs that protect landscape plants from serious pests while conserving these organisms.
Sucking insects like aphids and leafhoppers remove juices from the plant, draining it of its resources and causing discoloration. Chewing insects like caterpillars and borers can skeletonize or tunnel into the trunk, branches, and roots of a tree. Other pests such as asian longhorn beetles, tussock moths, tulip poplar beetles, and emerald ash borer can defoliate the foliage and bark of trees.
Fungi such as leaf spot or anthracnose can also damage a tree. Anthracnose symptoms include brown spots on leaves that turn reddish as they rot. This disease is most common on ornamental cherry and sycamore trees, but can affect a wide range of species.
Some diseases and insect infestations are easy to recognize, but others are more difficult to diagnose without a strong understanding of tree biology, soil chemistry, insect identification, and life cycles. Many diseases and infections are preventable with proper cultural practices, watering, mulching, pruning, and treatment. Occasionally, judicious use of pesticides may be necessary to protect the health and appearance of your landscape’s trees.
When it comes to maintaining healthy trees, regular pruning is an important part of the process. This type of preventative maintenance includes removing diseased, dead or damaged branches, reducing obstructions and promoting new growth. The Arborist Association defines tree pruning as “the selective removal of branch tips, limbs and buds from woody plants to shape or improve their health, appearance and function.”
The most common reasons for performing a pruning operation include removing dying or dead branches, reducing the height of a plant or shrub to allow clearance for pedestrian or vehicular traffic, changing the form or structure of a tree or shrub, or encouraging flowering and fruit production. Typically, a professional arborist will prune a plant to reduce the risk of failure and promote its health.
Pruning is most effective when performed during a plant’s dormant season. During this time, a plant can more easily compartmentalize wounds that result from pruning cuts. This will help to minimize the spread of infection from pathogens such as insects, disease or decay.
Some plants such as hydrangeas (H. macrophylla and H. serrata) should be pruned after blooming. This helps to control their size, and it allows them to set flower buds for the following year.
Other plants, such as maples, oaks and elms, should be pruned during their dormant period to encourage vigorous growth in the spring. This will also reduce the risk of disease and insect damage from winter weather conditions such as ice and snow, wind or salt.
Lastly, certain species of deciduous trees can be pruned using a technique called pollarding. This involves periodically removing small-diameter branches back to the secondary branches off of the main stem, which will cause regrowth to produce more foliage from the remaining branch stubs. While this is a great maintenance strategy for some species of willow, it should be avoided on most other tree types as it causes severe stress to the plant.
A reputable tree care company will perform routine inspections of your trees and shrubs to identify potential problems such as insect infestations or diseases. An experienced tree service will know exactly how to address these issues and can save you valuable time and money by avoiding costly damage and preventing the need for removal.
Trees that are in danger of falling can cause severe damage, especially when they come down during a storm. It’s important to have any such trees removed as part of your overall tree care plan. Whether you have an unsightly stump that needs to be ground up or just want to remove a diseased, insect-ridden or otherwise unhealthy tree, a professional can help you decide the best course of action.
Before beginning any removal work, your arborist will inspect the tree and its surroundings to make sure there aren’t any hazards present. This includes assessing the height of the tree and making sure there’s enough space for it to fall completely flat once it’s cut down. It’s also a good idea to clear the area around the tree and remove any lawn furniture, cars, or other items that could get hit by a falling branch or trunk.
The type of tree matters as well. A species that’s prone to frequent breakage or insect infestation might not be worth keeping, even if it’s healthy. A tree that drops a lot of debris or roots that pierce into sidewalks or driveways may also need to be removed.
You may also need to remove a tree if it’s growing too close to power lines, a roof or other structures, on a slope or in a rocky area with limited soil. It’s a good idea to check local regulations as some places prohibit removing trees that aren’t structurally sound or too close to property lines, utilities and buildings.
Removing a tree can be a tricky business that requires special equipment and knowledge of proper techniques. If you hire a tree service, they will need to be fully insured and licensed for their work, as it involves hazardous activities in close proximity to people and structures.
When hiring a tree removal company, get several estimates and compare prices. You should be wary of a low price as this may indicate that the workers are not properly trained or equipped. In addition, the worker may not carry the required insurance. A reputable tree service should be insured against both general liability and workman’s compensation insurance, as well as specialized insurance for tree removal work.