Many people only see fall as a time when trees drop their leaves, but it is also an excellent time to prepare your trees for the upcoming winter and to plant new trees. Before it gets too cold for both you and your tree, follow these easy steps to ensure your trees stay healthy through the winter.
How to Plant New Trees
Fall is the perfect time to plant new trees because of the cooler weather. You’ll have an easier time planting trees when it’s not too hot out and the new trees will be able to grow their root systems much quicker without worrying about high temperatures and drought. If you’re considering planting a new tree in your yard, follow these easy steps.
- Step 1: Choose your tree and your location. Pick a tree that will thrive in your hardiness zone and choose where you’re going to plant it. Keep in mind how big your tree will grow and make sure to plant it where it has enough room.
- Step 2: Dig the hole. The hole you dig for your tree should be wide enough to let the tree’s roots grow out. Be sure not to dig the hole too deep.
- Step 3: Put the tree in the hole. If the tree you are planting is balled or has a burlap covering, you should either remove the covering completely or at least peel it back. This will allow for healthy tree roots.
- Step 4: Backfill the hole. Use nutrient-rich soil to backfill the hole and then top it off with mulch. The mulch will help control the temperature of the soil and keeps the soil moist.
How to Care for Existing Trees
Caring for your trees doesn’t stop when their leaves fall. Instead, use the fall season to prepare your trees for the upcoming winter. All you need is a some mulch, water and a little careful pruning.
- Step 1: Fertilize and mulch. Your trees lose nutrients after a long, hot summer and a cold, biting winter, so fall is the perfect time to make sure your trees can get enough to survive. Putting mulch down around your trees will also help keep in nutrients and water and make sure your trees have enough to sustain them through the harsh winter.
- Step 2: Water your trees. You probably watered your trees frequently during the summer, but they still need water in the fall. One of the best ways to make sure your trees have enough water to last through the winter is with subsurface watering. If subsurface watering isn’t feasible, water your trees either early in the morning or late at night.
- Step 3: Carefully prune your trees. Only prune dead, diseased, or damaged limbs and branches. Pruning promotes new growth, so you don’t want your tree to try to start growing before spring. Pruning the dead, diseased, or damaged limbs will only keep your tree healthy.