How to Protect Your Trees During Winter
Many people think of winter as a time for celebration, hunkering down, and drawing close to family. In fact, in many places, winter weather actually causes people to spend time at home, staying warm and together.
Human beings live differently in the winter. Our bodies need protection from the elements, warmth, and nutrient-rich, warm, immunity-boosting foods. It’s easy for most people to get what they need to stay healthy and safe during the winter months. However, it’s easy to forget that we are not the only living thing that needs to safely make it through the winter.
The harsh weather of winter, with its often freezing temperatures, wind, and snow, can be devastating for plants and trees. It can cause damage to the bark, foliage, roots, and more. In winter, plants and trees can also become nourishment for animals who are short on food.
You need to know how to keep your trees safe in the winter in order to prevent significant damage. There are a number of things that you can do to make sure they make it through the season relatively unscathed.
Protecting Your Trees During Winter
During the winter your trees need protection. The main threats that unprotected trees face are discoloration, damage from animals, and damage occurring from frost heaving.
When you’re preparing for the winter, you will want to add preparing the trees to your list of tasks. Each year, you’ll take the same steps to keep your trees safe until it becomes second nature and your trees grow tall, strong, and healthy.
Protection from browning and discoloration
Each winter, evergreen trees are at risk of having their foliage discolored. This happens for a number of reasons, including a loss of water during a time when the roots are unable to drink and replenish the water due to frozen soil, a yo-yoing of temperatures, sun, and shade that confuses and damages the foliage, and a destruction of chlorophyll that is unable to reboot due to the freezing temperatures.
Sometimes, despite your best efforts, discoloration occurs. However, there is something that you can do to help prevent it as winter approaches. One thing that you can do is craft some sort of shield for the sides of the tree that face the wind and the south. You can do this by wrapping burlap around those sides, or even the entire tree, as long as you leave the top unwrapped.
Protection from Animals
Trees become food for many local animals during the winter, as much of their usual sources become frozen or paused. Bark is often eaten by rabbits, mice, and other types of small rodents, which can end up exposing the base of the tree and eventually causing the tree to die.
In order to prevent these animals from eating the bark off of your trees, is to either wrap metal mesh around the tree, as well as to keep mulch away from the tree’s base. Instead of the bark, deer eat the tree’s branches and stems. They can be kept away by dipping rags in repellent that contains thiram and hanging them on the tree.
Protection from Frost Heaving
After a good length of time with soil freezing and thawing repeatedly, plants that have shallow roots or are small, can be pushed out of the ground and the roots are left without a foundation and the potential to be destroyed.
To try and prevent frost heaving from occurring, use mulch. The mulch insulates the roots and also keeps the roots’ moisture in. Any plants that do experience frost heaving can be replanted when temperatures rise and the soil thaws for good that season.
Protect trees by pruning after winter
So Are You Ready To Protect Your Trees?
Each winter, it’s easy to remember to bundle yourself up when you go outside, to eat healthy foods, and to get plenty of rest. It’s not as easy to remember to take care of your trees.
Preparing your trees for winter is simple and worth the time. Follow these tips so that you have healthy, flourishing, beautiful-looking trees to welcome in the spring.
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