Here are some things you can do to keep your tree in tip-top shape in the winter.
While pruning isn’t something you necessarily want to get carried away with, pruning over the long-term can have a variety of positive benefits for your tree. If you’re conscientious, proper pruning can enhance both the beauty and function of your trees, while reducing the potential loss of limbs later on in the winter. In addition, it can help protect trees from the kinds of infections we discuss here on our blog frequently.
Pruning is particularly beneficial in the winter because it’s less disruptive to your landscape and generally speaking – can be safer if you’re working with larger trees. Especially in regions where the ground freezes, equipment can get closer to limbs and do more precise work, which believe it or not can really reduce the cost of a major tree makeover.
While the fall is perhaps the best time to mulch your trees – you can do it in the winter months, just be sure to do it during minor ‘heat’ (we use the term loosely) waves when the soil is a bit softer. Mulch can retain soil moisture, better manage temperatures and restores nutrient levels that contribute to the overall structure and health of the tree. In most cases, mulch is almost never a bad thing.
Inspections and professional work
While the bulk of an arborists’ work certainly comes during growing seasons, the winter is a perfectly acceptable time to call one up and get them to perform a variety of tasks on some of your more treasured trees. At the very least, the winter time can often give an arborist a much more clear preview of what’s to come in the growing months and help preemptively prepare for both the good and bad of the warm season.
Cabling, bracing, the removal of critical risk trees are also ‘heavy lifting’ type jobs best suited for a professional that can – in some specific cases – be more easily done in the winter as well. So if you’re looking to tackle a larger tree task, the winter is as good a time as any to get it done.