Tips To Keep Your Tree Trunks Healthy This Summer

With summer fast approaching, many homeowners are turning their attention to the matters of the landscape. Lawn grass and flower gardens are usually top of the list in spring and summer, but many homeowners overlook the little things that ensure their tree trunks are healthy and look their best. The following guide can help you avoid this oversight.

Tip #1: Avoid root suffocation

Flower beds ringing the roots of trees are a relatively common landscape design method, particularly since this heavily shaded area is often bare of grass. There are a few things to keep in mind to ensure the flower beds don't stress the trees, though. First and foremost, do not bring in a lot of soil and bury the trunk or the surface roots. This can lead to rot problems along the trunk or suffocate necessary surface roots. You can lay a thin layer of compost. Opt for small transplants so you don't have to dig deep to plant the flowers since this can also damage roots. Finally, choose the right flowers. Shade-tolerant annuals are best, like impatiens or pansies. They don't have deep roots that compete with the tree but they add a splash of bright color.

Tip #2: Level mulch mountain

Mulch is another method used to hide bare soil beneath a tree. The best mulch for around deciduous trees is bark or wood chips, while you can use bark or pine straw under evergreen trees. When laying the mulch, make sure it is no more than 2 inches thick so it doesn't suffocate any surface roots. Also, pull it back from the trunk so there is a 3-inch space between the mulch and the bark. You don't want to trap moisture against tree bark. The key thing to avoid is mounding the mulch up and around the trunk. Although this mountain of mulch may look attractive, there is a good chance it will damage the tree. 

Tip #3: Mind the bark

Mechanical damage to the trunk can result in disease or even death. If a tree loses it's bark in a full circle around the trunk, even if just in a thin line, it can die since bark loss inhibits the flow of nutrients. Don't wrap anything tightly or permanently around the trunk. If you must tie something around a tree trunk, such as a hammock or laundry line, place a wide piece of fabric under the rope to act as padding, and make sure it is removed by the end of the summer season. It's also a good idea to avoid using lawn mowers or string trimmers right up against the trunk since these can also remove the bark.

For more help, contact a tree service in your area like S.A. Total Tree Service