While trees do experience a period of dormancy during winter months, they are nevertheless stressed by harsh winter conditions such as frigid temperatures and ice and snow accumulation.
You can continue to take care of the trees in your property throughout winter, albeit in much smaller doses than summer or fall care.
It’s Not too Late to Mulch
Mulching helps trees to retain moisture as well as providing an extra layer of protection against the cold. This is typically an autumn gardening task, but it can still be done at the beginning of winter or during mild winter months. Protecting your trees from temperature extremes helps keep them healthy during their winter sleep.
Keep Your Trees Hydrated
Young trees can be especially vulnerable in the winter. When the trees and the soil are cool but not completely frozen, you can still water your trees to help keep them properly hydrated.
Without leaves, it is much easier to see your tree’s overall structure and therefore much easier to prune them properly.
However, limit yourself to removing deadwood and ill-placed branches. Heaving pruning can harm and damage trees and recovering from over-pruning will be especially difficult during the cold winter months. You want to preserve as many healthy branches as possible, while improving the shape and appearance of the tree.
Protect Your Trees
Small animals foraging and fighting to survive in the winter can gnaw or chew on trees, which can lead to significant damage. This is especially true in the case of young trees.
Prevent animals from harming your trees by protecting their base. Wrap them with a sturdy plastic guard or strong, hard cloth to discourage small animals from chewing on their bark. This will also help prevent the trees from temperature damage during a harsh winter. Remember to remove the guards in the spring to give trees ample room to grow.
Taking care of trees in the winter rewards you in the spring when new life breaks through to delight you once again in the beauty and dependability of the seasons.
Well-maintained trees that are properly cared for, as well as regularly trimmed and pruned, increase the value of your property. They also add to your enjoyment of your property and lift your spirits each time you gaze at them, so make sure and protect them from winter ice, sleet and snow so they can thrive during the warmer months.