Best Trees to Plant for Shade

shade tree

Planting shade trees on your landscaping has many amazing benefits. Underneath a big shade tree is the best place for a backyard BBQ or for children to enjoy some much-needed time outdoors. It will also keep your home cooler during warmer months of the year.

To get the full benefit of shade trees, you need to plant the correct species and care for them correctly.

VA Tree Trimming has recommendations for the best trees to plant for shade, as well as some expert advice on maintaining your shade trees so they continue to grow strong and healthy.

Planting Trees for Shade

All trees can provide shade, but there are some species that are built for the best shade. These types of trees typically have a thick, wide canopy that extends out nearly as far as it does upward.

Below, we’ve provided some examples of shade trees depending on whether they would be best planted in your back or front yard.

Back Yard Shade Trees

Shade trees in the back yard are primarily for your own benefit. Neighbors and passersby probably won’t see these trees , so they can be planted purely for shade and enjoyment.

Besides just shade, these trees can provide year-round color and some additional privacy from neighbors.

Here are popular choices:

  • Magnolia
  • Sugar maple or silver maple
  • Weeping willow
  • Weeping cherry
  • Red oak

If you have a large enough space, a live oak is another beautiful choice. Live oaks are considered the fastest growing shade trees, and they can get very large. A mature live oak is able to reach up to 80 feet tall and as much as 100 feet wide.

A lot of these back yard tree recommendations get very big, so you need to do some research to determine if the tree is going to have enough space to grow to its full potential.

If there is not enough space, its root system can damage your fencing or even your home foundation. You will also have to prune the tree every year to keep it manageable. A tree that is too big for its yard will most likely have to be cut down, which is an inconvenient and sometimes costly situation.

Front Yard Shade Trees

In the front yard, you are planting trees for your enjoyment as well, but these trees will be a lot more beneficial for increasing curb appeal and value to your home since they can be seen.

Buy shade trees for the front yard that are a little smaller so they don’t overshadow your home and landscaping. These trees should pair with your landscaping in both size and color, while still creating lots of shade for front yard play and relaxation.

These are some of the shade trees VA Tree Trimming recommends:

Red maple
River birch
White oak
Ginkgo tree

These trees are beautiful throughout the year, and they’ll exude even more color in the fall months.
Another good option for your front or side yard is the ‘Green Giant’ Arborvitae. This hedge-like tree can be planted in a row with others to create privacy as well as shade.

With options in mind, we recommend that you plant what you like. In reality, any tree can grow to become a “shade tree.” so long as the trees you choose are suitable for the weather in Virginia, they will provide your yard and home with shade.

Benefits of Planting Shade Trees

The benefits of having shade on your property are numerous — and there are some that you likely don’t typically think about.

Shade, Obviously – When temperatures get too hot, you don’t need to run indoors if you have a comfortable, shady yard. Set up a chair or hammock below your biggest shade tree and relax outside as long as you like.

Climate Control – Trees can regulate the temperature in your yard and inside your home. Not only do trees protect you from glaring sun, but they can make it feel 10-15 degrees colder under their protective canopies. This means less solar radiation on your roof and siding as well, which could result in lower energy costs!

Better Air Quality – Trees produce oxygen and expel pollutants from the air, so there is healthier air around your house. Arbor Day Foundation research states that one mature tree absorbs around 48 pounds of CO2 out of the air.

Shelter for Animals – If you enjoy bird watching or think chipmunks are adorable, your trees can give them all they will need to build a shelter, find food and raise babies.

Fun – What kid doesn’t want a backyard tree fort or tire swing? If you have children, shade trees can offer hours of fun and joyful memories.

How to Care for Shade Trees

Caring for shade trees is easy as long as you’ve planted the right species for the climate in Virginia. Healthy trees are strong and durable after the first few years, requiring little attention or maintenance.

Consult a certified arborist from VA Tree Trimming if you have questions about the care of your shade trees, or even to help you determine the perfect tree for your yard.

Once you have determined the best shade tree(s), follow this care guide until your shade tree is well established.

Planting Your Shade Tree

The south, west and east of your property get the most sun, so plant your trees on one of these sides of your yard. This is two-fold: 1) the trees will then provide the most amount of shade and 2) they will also receive the most amount of sun to grow healthy.

Trimming Your Shade Tree

Prune during the first year or two after planting the tree to help to shape it and help it develop a strong foundation. To be safe, and for the best results, call VA Tree Trimming for tree trimming in Virginia. A certified arborist will arrive at your home and deliver professional care for the tree.

Watering Your Shade Tree

Watering a new tree is crucial. This will help them form a deep and strong root system and will give the tree stability in the long run.

Fertilizing Your Shade Tree

Homeowners should fertilize a shade tree the same way you would any other tree in order to promote growth. Fertilizer is not necessary, but it can help your tree to grow faster and produce more leaves, which are the primary source of your shade.

We hope this blog post was helpful! Remember, when it comes time to trim or prune a new shade tree, VA Tree Trimming can help! Call us and a certified arborist in Virginia will visit your home, assess the tree and formulate the proper care plan for its long-term growth and health.

Tree Trimming Mistakes to Avoid

tree pruning mistake

Tree pruning is best left to professionals. It’s dangerous work, climbing trees, using chainsaws and dropping heavy branches to the ground; and it can also be dangerous for the tree as well. Trees that are improperly pruned can suffer from a lifetime of problems.

Instead of putting yourself in harm’s way and the tree itself at risk, find a professional who is knowledgeable and experienced to do the job for you.

This will lead to healthier trees and a safer environment surrounding your home for several reasons:

  • Healthier trees are sturdier and less likely to cause damage during severe storms
  • Maintained trees won’t attract or spread diseases and parasites
  • Pruned trees produce more flowers or fruit
  • Trimmed trees offer shade while still allowing air to flow throughout their canopies and your property

VA Tree Trimming highly encourages pruning trees that are very close to your home or any that are an integral part of your landscape.

Is Tree Pruning Necessary?

It is not required. But it is important. Trees are very hardy and grow on their own everywhere in the world, in various different climates and regions, without being pruned.

That said, there are several benefits of tree trimming, so it’s definitely recommended for any trees that you care about. This includes sentimental trees, fruit trees and blossoming trees or trees that perform an important service for your house, such as shade or home to wildlife.

Tree Pruning Gone Wrong

Trimming a tree is a complicated project. You need the correct tools and a lot of knowledge to ensure the job is done right. The majority of homeowners don’t have either of these!

But that’s OK, because there are plenty of arborists available who know how to correctly prune trees for an affordable cost to you including all arborists throughout Virginia we work with!

Here are the 5 mistakes homeowners make when they attempt DIY tree trimming that can lead to several tree problems. These are things that an experienced arborist from VA Tree Trimming will know, and that’s exactly why their services are worth the price!

Trimming Too Much

When done properly, pruning is a never-ending process. Beginning when your trees are only 2 or 3 years old, they should be care for by a professional if you care about them and want to keep them strong and healthy.

A big mistake homeowners make when trimming trees by themselves is cutting too much of the tree all at once. This occurs because they have let the tree’s growth get out of control and try to correct it all at once. Ideally, you should only cut off 5-20% of the tree’s crown at the actual removal cut. It is a lot easier to do this during a season that there are no leaves, but an experienced arborist will be able to safely trim trees any time of year.

Cutting at the Wrong Place

A certified arborist knows where to trim each limb to prevent damage. This cut should be made just beyond the branch collar, the specific place where the branch connects to the trunk.

Cutting too close to the branch collar exposes the tree to insects, decay and mildew. Cutting too far from it leaves an unsightly stump when the tree has recovered. Most DIY tree pruning results in an improper cut, leaving either aesthetic or structural issues.

Trimming Large Branches

Branches larger than 4 inches in diameter really shouldn’t be pruned unless it is absolutely necessary. Cutting off a branch of this size can cause imbalance in the tree and expose it to insects and rot as the tree recovers from such a large loss.

Conservative trimming every year ensures that your tree trimmer only has to cut off branches that are 2-3 inches in diameter, which results in a more attractive shape for the tree and less risk of damaging the tree or exposing it to disease and pests.

Topping the Tree

Tree topping is an outdated type of pruning, and for good reason! During this service, arborists would just cut the top off of the tree to get the desired height. It was neither attractive nor was it beneficial for the tree, so the majority of arborists do not practice tree topping currently.

As a DIY tree trimming, you might think this is a good way to reduce the height of your tree with just a single cut, but once you have cut the top of a tree off, there’s almost no chance it will ever return to a natural shape.

The Solution? Call VA Tree Trimming

Your tree may never recover from poor pruning.

Attempting this job yourself might seem like a good way to save a little money, but you might end up with way more expenses trying to revive damaged trees, so it’s really safer (and more economical in the long run) to hire a certified arborist in Virginia from VA Tree Trimming.

Limbs don’t grow back. The tree will grow more, but it will not grow back in the same places, which leads to strange shapes that could require years to fix. The tree could end up looking bad for the remainder of its life, all because of just one trimming mistake.

Incorrect pruning could also result in death of the tree. Removing too many limbs (and, therefore, leaves) can affect the tree’s photosynthesis process, meaning it won’t get enough water or enough sunlight and carbon dioxide to continue growing.

Cutting too many branches might also send the tree into a state of shock. Shock isn’t necessarily permanent, but it does take a lot of patience and care. Even with proper maintenance, a tree experiencing shock may still die.

Avoid all of these tree pruning mistakes and call VA Tree Trimming to speak with a tree care specialist in Virginia able to customize a plan to ensure your tree continues blossoming and looking beautiful for years to come!

7 Common Tree Problems & Diseases

Trees are living things, so that means that they can become “sick” like people and animals can. A disease or other tree issue may take a while to show itself due to the overall size of the tree, and once symptoms become clear, it could be too late to revive the tree.

A professional arborist from VA Tree Trimming can help you identify and treat tree problems so that you have a much greater chance of keeping the tree. Learn about our service here. Not only can an experienced arborist keep a tree from dying, but they are also able to help trees get healthier growth and more flowers or fruit with professional tree pruning.

Have you noticed a tree on your lawn that has always seemed healthy but all of the sudden looks like something is wrong? In the next blog post, we’ll explain some of the most common tree issues and what these symptoms mean for a tree.

If you notice any of these things, act fast for the best chance of saving the tree and the ones nearby it.

Tree Diseases & Common Problems

These 7 things are the most common issues addressed by experienced arborists in Virginia. The moment you think one of these things is wrong with your tree, call someone with the training and tools to help!

Tree Diseases

Leaf Rust – Leaf rust is a fungus that is common in both plants and trees. The name comes from the brown and yellow spots this disease causes on the leaves.

Leaf rust is a problem because it prevents the leaves’ photosynthesis, the process by which it breathes. Leaf rust can be tended to with fungicides and selective trimming of the diseased leaves. It might be recommended to remove entire branches with leaf rust.

Witches’ Broom – This common disease results in a large clump of twigs, dead leaves and branches that look like a broom shape. It is caused by insects, unusually wet weather or fungus. The formation of a clump of twigs and leaves is the tree’s reaction to infection or danger.

Some cases of Witches’ Broom are deadly for the tree, while others are just considered a growth malformation. An arborist can tell you for sure.

Mildew – Mildew is a type of fungus that grows on almost anything in moist conditions, but even after the moist conditions are over with, mildew can remain and thrive. It appears as a powdery substance, usually white, and it usually shows up on the leaves of a tree first.

The trick to eliminating mildew is to use a fungicide that includes sulfur. This will remove the current mildew and help to stop future mildew growth on the tree. You may also need to prune the tree to remove limbs, fruit, flowers and leaves that were affected by the mildew

Gall – Gall is a tree condition that occurs when insects build small nests on the leaves or twigs of a tree to leave their eggs in. Most types of galls are not harmful to the tree, but none of them are attractive.

Gall will appear as bumps on the tree, in different sizes. They are often white, brown, gray or some color in between.

You do not have to treat the tree if there are galls, but they can inhibit the growth of young trees. Treat galls by killing the insects. You should also clean out from under the tree after the leaves fall off, because this is where the insects survive during winter.

Other Tree Problems

Poor Pruning – There’s a discipline to tree pruning, as well as many types, and if you aren’t sure what you’re doing, you could harm the tree past the point of recovery. Consider the type of tree, season and other factors. Under-pruning (or a lack of pruning at all) can be just as big of an issue. Only an experienced arborist should be trusted to prune trees to keep them healthy.

Lack of Water – Young trees can be significantly impacted by drought. If you plant new trees, you will need to supplement how much water they get from rainfall. A tree that is not getting enough water can have its growth inhibited. The first sign you are likely to see is scorched or dry leaves. Find more tips for new trees here.

Too Much Sun – Do some research before planting trees in a sunny area. Many types of trees can handle it without issue, but too much sun can happen to any tree if the sun is too hot for a long period and rainfall is light. A tree that is getting too much sun needs extra water to fight against wilting, drooping leaves.

Certified Arborist Services in Virginia

A certified arborist from VA Tree Trimming will quickly identify what’s happening with your sick tree and put together a plan to save it if at all possible.

Here is what an arborist is qualified to do:

  • Inspect trees from below and from the branches of the tree if possible. Getting into the canopy is usually necessary to identify exactly what is causing the symptoms.
  • Treat your tree with fertilizers and additives in the dirt or solutions sprayed on the leaves. This person will have expert knowledge about the disease affecting your tree and the most effective treatments for it.
  • Trim trees to get rid of dead or diseased branches and to assist healthy growth. Even if heavy trimming is needed, they will know how to remove branches so that the tree survives both the disease and the pruning process.
  • Remove the tree from your property if there is no chance to save it. The worst case scenario is that the tree is dying, and cutting it down is the only way to protect your property and surrounding landscape.

They can also inform you about the trees that you have om your property and how to best maintain them so you don’t return to the same situation in the future.

Some tree diseases look similar to each other, requiring a professional eye to correctly determine and correct the issue. If your trees are looking dry, unhealthy or disfigured, call a professional arborist from VA Tree Trimming for an inspection before it’s too late for your tree.

What is the Best Season for Tree Pruning?

seasonal tree pruning in virginia

When it comes to the question, “What season is best for tree trimming?” The answer will likely be vague.

The type of tree will determine when many species can be pruned, along with insect population and activity, local tree and plant diseases and other plants and trees nearby.

With the guidance of a professional arborist in Virginia, you will be able to decide which time of year is the best for trimming your trees to set them up for success next season and every year after that.

Best Season to Trim Trees

Without any other information, VA Tree Trimming recommends pruning trees in the winter. This would be sometime within November to March in Virginia. This season is best because trees are usually dormant, so pruning will lead to a minimal amount of damage, if any.

There are several benefits to pruning trees during the winter:

Lower chance of pest damage and disease – Insects and plant diseases are mostly inactive in the winter in Virginia. During the rest of the year, anything from insects to fungus can affect a newly pruned tree because the tree is most susceptible and these issues are more common during warmer weather.

Easier to see the shape of the tree when the leaves are gone – Leaves get in the way of your arborist from seeing the overall shape of a tree. When the tree branches are bare, it is a lot easier to see dead or diseased limbs and branches that are touching versus those that are just too close to each other.

Trees have time to heal before spring – By performing significant tree trimming during the winter, your trees will have several months to build up callus tissue on the ends of the remaining branch collar. By spring, you’ll barely be able to notice where the branches were cut off, and the tree will be able to focus its energy to produce new, healthier leaves, fruit or flowers instead of healing new cuts.

Less chance of harming nearby landscaping – Most of the nearby trees and plants will also be dormant during this time, so there is a lower risk of doing damage to them. Many times, a tree is surrounded by annual plants in the warmer seasons, but there are no plants to be disturbed during the winter months since these annuals already died out.

Do All Trees Need Pruning?

Yes, all trees benefit from trimming. Tree trimming in the winter is good for trees, but it is also a precaution for the safety of your landscaping and your family. Let us explain:

Pruning Makes the Tree Healthier

Dead and diseased branches are cut off, as are stubs that are prone to pests and disease. Limbs that can rub against each other are also pruned so they don’t weaken one another or cause an open wound on the tree.

Pruning trees each year is a great way to get expert eyes on the health of your trees so that early signs of decay, disease and pest infestations can be identified and dealt with right away.

A Cared-For Tree Serves Its Purpose Better

When a tree becomes overgrown, it’s hard for water and nutrients to get to every limb. This can leave the tree looking weak and sick and definitely not doing what it’s intended to do.

Pruned trees, on the other hand, produce more fruit, healthier leaves and provide better shade. They are much fuller and healthier and less likely to create landscaping problems. So regardless of why you planted a new tree, pruning will maximize the results you desire from it.

Trees are More Beautiful After Pruning

If the curb appeal of your landscaping is important to you, tree pruning is important! Trimming trees creates an attractive, uniform shape and size. This is especially important if you have a lot of identical trees on your property.

Removing lower branches and upper branches that grow at awkward angles improves the overall beauty of the tree while also strengthening tree health.

Less Risk of Falling Branches

Tree pruning – done the right way – encourages the remaining branches to grow healthier and stronger. Therefore, storms and high winds won’t damage your trees the way they would an unkempt tree. Your home and family will be safer living under and around trimmed trees.

Another safety issue for large trees is that they can impede the view of traffic lights, road signs and driveways. Tree trimming, crown raising and other professional tree care services will keep the tree at a manageable size and prevent it from blocking various views.

Call VA Tree Trimming for Tree Trimming

Working with a professional arborist in Virginia gives you access to their knowledge on the subject of tree trimming. We recommend relying on their years of experience if you have trees on your property that you’d like to keep healthy for awhile.

An arborist won’t only look at the immediate situation. Instead, he or she will take time to inspect your trees and understand their unique scenario (including their location and other factors that may put them at risk of disease or infestation). After collecting all the information, an arborist will make a long-term plan based on the trees’ needs and stick to that plan until the goals for your trees are met.

This plan might take many years to implement, but rest assured, it will lead to healthy trees that you and your family can enjoy for generations.

This type of ongoing care will promote healthy tree growth, help your landscaping fight off plant diseases and increase flower or fruit production from your trees. It will also fortify your trees so there is less risk of falling trees or limbs.

Being proactive about tree pruning will save you a lot of money over time too. Preventative maintenance is far more affordable than the cost of emergency tree services, storm damage restoration or restoring an ill tree from a disease that has spread out of hand (and one that was easily preventable).

If you care about the health of your trees and the curb appeal of your property, trust a certified arborist for tree pruning and maintenance from VA Tree Trimming. Find our service area here. We work with arborists across the entire state of Virginia. Call now!

Types of Tree Pruning

tree pruning types

Tree pruning in Virginia is a landscaping service that can beautify and reinforce your trees so they are able to fight off insects, diseases and severe weather – and look wonderful doing it!

Pruning must be done if you want a healthy tree, but it needs to be done properly by someone who has experience in what they’re doing. Like a certified arborist from VA Tree Trimming. Homeowners may be able to prune trees safely while they are still small and growing, but you also may be doing irreparable damage to the tree in the process.

To correctly prune trees, you should know all of the following:

  • When to prune your types of trees
  • How much of the tree can be trimmed at at once
  • Where to cut each branch so you do not harm the tree

Taking too much from a tree could kill it or cause structural damage, but conservative trimming done every year benefits trees in several ways. Pruning helps to improve the appearance of trees, makes them healthier, removes dead or diseased branches and assists in fruit or flower production.

Ideally, pruning needs to be performed each year, but as trees get older, you may be able to wait two years between pruning services. Regardless of how routinely you have your trees pruned, be sure your arborist is qualified to perform the type of tree pruning your trees need. This won’t be an issue if you call VA Tree Trimming in Virginia!

Types of Tree Pruning Methods

There are 7 ways to correctly prune a tree so that it grows stronger and healthier each year.

Depending on the size, species and health status of your trees, one method might be more beneficial than another, but each technique has distinct benefits to consider.

Crown Thinning Your Trees

Crown thinning is common for older, overgrown trees in Virginia. This method eliminates weak branches within the crown to allow more light and air flow throughout the crown. Air flow is important for disease prevention.

This tree pruning method also removes branches and limbs that are touching so they do not rub up against one another and break or cause weaker areas that can be an access point for pests. Limbs that grow at strange angles are almost always cut off during crown thinning.

Crown Raising Your Trees

This tree trimming method removes branches and limbs at the lowest part of the crown so new limbs start higher up on the trunk. Letting low branches get too big makes them very hard to remove, and they can pull nutrients from the top of the tree, which leads to less fruit and a weak tree.

There are a variety of reasons you might decide to raise the crown of a tree. Many times, it is done in order to clear the line of sight for automobiles and pedestrians, but it can be done to increase space for landscaping underneath the tree.

It is a very common technique for overgrown trees that are too close to homes and other buildings.

Crown Reduction

Crown reduction lowers the overall size of the crown from its outer edge. It shortens branches horizontally and vertically to keep the tree at a manageable size. By lowering the size of the crown, you can remove the need to chop down the tree because it won’t interfere with traffic lights, power lines or street lights.

Even when the tree isn’t close to structures like these, crown reduction will help the tree look neater because it removes irregular growth. This is a good solution for trees that are various ages but you want to look uniform.

Crown Cleaning

Also known as deadwood pruning, crown cleaning is a minimally invasive tree pruning technique that eliminates dying, snapped or diseased branches so that the rest of the tree can continue to grow normally. These limbs can only cause problems later.

Crown cleaning makes the tree look much better, and it stops branches from rubbing together. It is also a safety practice that reduces the chance of branches falling, since healthy branches do not fall very often.

Crown Restoration

Crown restoration is an intense trimming process for trees that have been severely damaged (either by pests or weather). It needs to be attempted by a professional who knows how the tree is going to grow in the future and how long it’s restoration will take.

Unlike most other tree pruning services, crown restoration happens over an extended period of time with conservative trimming that reshapes the tree. Your arborist should have a plan to restore the tree, but also be flexible as the tree grows and reshapes on its own, adapting to the tree’s new growth pattern.

Vista Pruning

If you want trees that add to the overall beauty of your landscaping, you are actually interested in vista pruning. The purpose of vista pruning is to help to make the tree more visually pleasing from a particular vantage point.

It consists of many tree trimming techniques including crown thinning, crown cleaning and crown reduction – anything that helps the trees look prettier. Remember, though, that a professional is not going to sacrifice the health of a tree, so the focus of vista pruning is still to create strong, healthy trees.

Espalier Pruning

Espaliered trees are pruned heavily to grow flat against walls or a trellis. It is a unique style of trimming that is going to draw a lot of attention to your landscape. Espalier pruning must be started when the tree is very young and then continued very consistently during the tree’s life span.

Some of the benefits of espalier pruning include allowing maximum sunlight to get to the trees, as well as making it easier to harvest fruit.

Professional Tree Pruning in Virginia

Tree pruning can be dangerous for a tree, your landscaping, and, of course, for you! VA Tree Trimming highly encourages professional tree trimming over attempting DIY.

Aside from the many possible dangers of tree trimming, you can do a lot of harm to a tree if you don’t know how to prune it properly. Over-pruning is one of the most common errors made by homeowners caring for their own trees.

Trees in Virginia that get annual care from a professionals are much better off, and hiring a certified arborist from VA Tree Trimming to trim the trees on your property is a choice you won’t regret. Locate your town in our service area. We work with arborists throughout the entire state of Virginia!

How to Care for New Trees

Planting a tree on your property has many benefits. Trees provide summer shade, create privacy, filter polluted air and increase property value.

Once completely grown, trees are pretty simple to care for: another benefit! Trees are hardy and tend to continue growing even with minimal care. But, if you want to ensure your trees reach their potential, they need a little more effort.

Lack of care for young trees can lead to rotting, disease, under watering or pest issues.

Fortunately, tree care isn’t very difficult, but you will want a little information to do it right. Research the trees you plant to know what they need to succeed. Then properly care for them and watch them bloom.

Here, we’ll outline the five best tips for planting a new tree and seeing it grow. You likely are familiar with the basics, so we’ll dive deeper and explain how to do each step correctly.

Tree Care Tips for New Trees

These tips will not only help keep your trees alive, they’ll help them to grow faster, stand up to extreme winds, fight off diseases ,insects and pests and produce more leaves, buds or fruit.

Water Your Tree

New trees need more water than older ones. The trees you plant are no exception.

The root of the tree and the soil all around it have to be kept moist, but don’t let it get soaked, because this might cause some of the roots to rot.

The general rule is 4-10 gallons of water every week. This includes rain water, and although it’s hard to get an exact reading, a rain gauge can help get you close enough to add the rest. Your trees will need this much water every week for the first 2-3 growing seasons.

Mulch Around Your Trees

Mulch is much more than an attractive landscaping product. It actually helps protect new trees, especially the roots. But laying mulch the wrong way can sometimes result in rotting and decay – so much so, that the tree will not survive.

Place mulch 3 inches away from the tree trunk and spread it around to completely cover the ground under the longest limb. For new trees, this won’t be very far, but as the tree grows, your mulch area will also grow as well.

Keep the mulch 2 to 4 inches thick in all areas around the tree. Be attentive in keeping it spread out consistently and away from the tree trunk so it does not limit air flow around the tree trunk.

Fertilize Around Your Tree

Fertilizer provides several nutrients your land’s soil might not have naturally. Most new trees will benefit from fertilizing, but you have to be using the right products and doing it at the right time for fertilizer to be most impactful.

The best time to fertilize is early spring. Sometimes early summer also provides the right conditions (comfortable temperatures and wet soil), but don’t count on it.

If you are unsure about which fertilizer to use, consult a tree care professional for advice. Slow-release fertilizers are typically a good idea because they feed trees over a period of time rather than all at once.

Follow through with these things in the initial growing seasons after planting a tree, and then review your watering, mulching and fertilizing as the tree becomes more established. As seasons go on, there will be tree care tasks that are more important for your new trees.

Trim Your Tree

Tree pruning is very important – but very challenging – in the first years after you plant a new tree. As the tree grows bigger, you will see several small branches take off, attempting to become the tree’s trunk. While you may think this means that the tree is healthy and growing well, it can actually result in a weak tree as time goes on.

Early pruning shapes the tree into what it is going to look like when it gets much larger. As tiny branches emerge from the lower trunk, they need to be cut off so they don’t steal water and nutrients from the upper branches.

As long as you have trees on your land, they need to be trimmed regularly. When the trees get too large for you to prune them safely, you can count on VA Tree Trimming to do the job for you.

Monitor Your Tree

New trees are at the most risk for damage, disease and insect issues. But you’re never completely safe from these issues. As your tree gets larger, watch it closely for signs of disease or bad nutrition, including the following:

  • Leaf color change out of season, with leaves turning brown or yellow
  • Premature leaf falling, despite whether leaves appear healthy or sick
  • Wilting, regardless of proper watering
  • Single branches or limbs dying
  • Bark peeling

These signs indicate a health issue. The tree is probably going to need professional maintenance if your goal is to keep the tree alive. An experienced arborist can identify the problem by just looking at your tree, although they will do testing whenever necessary.

If you identify the issue quick enough, you will probably be able to save the tree from dying. Being proactive is the best way to protect your growing trees.

The steps above are basic yet effective. Don’t underestimate the value of the basics! When new trees have pruning, fertilizer and more,, combined with some sunshine and barring any severe, damaging weather, the odds are in your favor that they will survive and look beautiful!

Of course, you may already have a very busy schedule and don’t want to be responsible for these additional lawn care projects. In most cases, homeowners don’t have the physical ability or the tools to give their new trees the necessary care.

No matter the situation, it’s a good idea to seek the help of a tree service for caring for new trees. A professional arborist in Virginia can advise you about the course of maintenance for each type of tree you plant on your property. They enjoy sharing their knowledge and skills with homeowners planting new trees on their land, and can be the difference between trees struggling and trees that thrive.

Call VA Tree Trimming now for information on routine tree care in Virginia – including tree trimming – for new trees and older trees. A local tree service will determine the best plan for your trees! Locate your city in our service area here.