Posted on: 13 February 2020Share
Winter is an interesting season. You spend most of your time inside knowing that at any time, it is going to start warming up, and with that warmer weather brings with it the prospect of more work. With tasks like spring cleaning, tidying up the garden beds, maintaining the HVAC system, the list goes on. Here's a little good news for you: there's one type of maintenance you can and should do before winter even ends. Tree care is best done in winter, at least for any trees that are not maples.
If you can dedicate just one weekend this winter to tree care, you can ensure they'll be set for a good season of growth when spring comes. Here's what you need to do.
1. Remove any dead or decaying branches.
One reason to trim your trees in winter is that it is easier to see since there are fewer leaves on the trees. You can see which branches are beginning to grow moss, die, or otherwise decline. Remove those branches, leaving just an inch or two of growth against the trunk. This part of the branch is known as the branch collar, and it contains vital tissue that you do not want to cut through.
2. Remove any crossed or oddly positioned branches.
Once all the dead branches are gone, take a step back, and look at the tree as a whole. Which branches look like they are out of place or ruining the tree's overall shape? Are there branches that cross over other branches, rubbing on them? Remove these branches, but do be sparing. You never want to remove more than 1/3 of the tree's branches at once, and less is better.
3. Clean up any remaining leaves and debris.
If additional leaves and debris fell onto the ground after your fall cleanup, you want to remove them before spring comes. If it starts warming up and the debris is still there, fungi can start breeding in the debris, and then they can easily infect your tree. Rake up any leaves and twigs, and dispose of them as far from your trees as possible. You might even want to have a fire on a dry winter day!
If you complete these tree care steps on a weekend day, your trees will have a better spring. Reach out to a tree care company if you need any assistance taking care of your trees.