Adding trees to your yard is one of the best landscaping ideas out there. Research shows that good landscaping can add up to 28% to overall home value; that just three properly placed trees could save you between $100 and $250 a year in energy costs; and that planting windbreaks and shade trees can reduce winter heating bills by 15% and air conditioning needs by 75%.
There’s just one problem: winter is coming. Larger, mature trees are typically capable of handling the colder months just fine on their own, but those new trees you’ve just planted to upgrade your landscape might need a little help. Here are just a few tree management tips to help.
The heat of the sun during the day and the freezing temperatures at night can cause your trees to suffer stress within the tree between the outer bark and inner wood, which leads to cracks. To prevent these cracks, consider wrapping your trees in cold weather tree blankets before the winter gets really underway.
Granted, water might fall from the sky in the form of snow and hail, but winter is still a pretty dry time. Trees can actually lose more water than they absorb, because the ground is frozen. To prevent your young trees from getting thirsty, lay a thick layer of mulch around them to help keep snow off and trap moisture.
Rodents need to eat, too. Since there isn’t a lot of food around in winter, they might set their hungry eyes on your trees. To stop rabbits from eating your trees’ bark, put a mesh wire fence around your trees. There are also commercial paint-on repellents available, too.
Remember: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of lawn repair. If you can keep winter from damaging your young trees, you won’t have to worry about the cost of lawn care later.
If you have any questions about these tree management tips, feel free to share in the comments.