Sunday, September 15, 2013

Tree Care for Unpredictable & Unsettled Weather

Helping your Trees Get Through Unpredictable and Unsettled Weather

Weather is unpredictable and your trees feel the stress of changing weather more than you might think. 

Between drastic changes in temperature, like we are experiencing in the Chicago area, and floods, dry spells, high winds, and ice storms, trees really get beaten up by Mother Nature. Here are a few tips on how to help your trees, especially young ones, make it through all the seasons, all the elements and all that Mother Nature throws at them. 

In wet and windy weather, your first priority should be trees planted in the last three years. These newly planted trees often have roots that have not developed fully. As a result, they are not yet anchored firmly into the ground and are particularly at risk from extreme weather conditions such as high wind and heavy rainfall.

During times of high, forceful winds, pay attention to these signs of wind damage:

• Leaning to one side, away from prevailing wind direction

• Splits at a weak fork

• Broken or splintered branches

During times of heavy rains or flooding many trees will be slow to show symptoms. Therefore, it can be difficult to assess if there is damage or what the damage is. Look for these tell tale signs of tree stress from waterlogged soil.

• Yellowing and early drop of some leaves

• The early onset of autumn color and full leaf drop

• Small leaf size

• Dead twigs and leaves at the ends of branches

There's more to come on how trees deal with severe fluctuations in weather conditions. Check back this week for more on tree care during unsettled weather.

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