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Learn about how to care for trees in summer. We all look forward to those long summer days of endless sun and time at the beach. Weeks can go by without a drop of rain with beautiful blues skies to wake up to each morning. This makes for great holidays but it is possible to have too much of a good thing.
Learn about how to care for trees in summer.
Although trees slow down a bit during summer they are still working away. They have just been through a time of large energy expenditure during spring as they grew new leaves and flowers. Summer is a time of gathering that energy back in via photosynthesis to replenish the reserves ready for growing new buds, fruiting and shedding leaves in autumn.
To function properly trees need water in amounts that are easily available to them. Water is an essential part of photosynthesis which is where trees use sunlight to convert carbon dioxide and water into glucose, oxygen and water. The glucose made during photosynthesis is how trees store energy and is a large factor in the overall health of the tree.
During the summer water can be scarce and this can have an impact on photosynthesis and tree heath. Trees also need water for their other functions and to move nutrients around their system. If the tree dries out too much these functions stop being able to work and the tree dies.
Helping your trees during hot, dry summer conditions is all about ensuring they have enough water. The best ways to achieve this are via mulching and watering. We have more detailed blogs about both of these topics. To learn more read here…
To mulch a tree it is best to apply well-rotted wood chip mulch.
Place the well-rotted wood chip mulch around the base of the tree to a depth of 50mm. The mulch should ideally reach out to the edge of the tree canopy or as large an area that is practically possible. The wood mulch helps to keep moisture in the ground by limiting evaporation and acts as a slow release fertiliser.
To water a tree the approach of little and often is better than lots infrequently. Watering enough to keep the soil moist but not damp is best as problems can result from over watering. The actual amount will vary depending on the individual situation so you will need to experiment.
You can consider using collected rain water or chemical free grey water from your house to reduce the use of drinking water. It is also best to begin watering before the soil completely dries out.
Trees are like humans in that the young, old and sick are most at risk during a drought.
If you have newly planted trees it is especially important to ensure they are taken care of during prolonged dry conditions.
Rossy and the Team.