With another drought apparently upon us again, it behooves us to think about our trees. In the last drought cycle, many trees suffered from the stress of desiccation and have either died or become more vulnerable to insect and fungus attacks. Trees in your landscape are your most valuable asset, not only in terms of beauty and property value but to shade and cool your home and outdoors and to filter out air pollution.
THE PROBLEM FOR TREES
Many people, in an attempt to save water, have let their lawns die out, but they have not realized what a negative impact that can have on their trees. Then they wonder: why are my trees looking so bad? Most of the trees we use in our towns are not as drought tolerant as our native oaks and others species - and even native flora suffered in the last drought cycle. While old well established trees can often make it through drought cycles, our current situation requires us to re-evaluate how we care for our trees.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO SAVE YOUR TREES?
It is important to understand tree structure. When people water their trees hey often water a little and they water up close to the trunk. This is the worst possible way to water them because the feeder roots that take in moisture and nutrition are not there to absorb the water AND it makes the root crown susceptible to oak root fungus and other problems. Always water out at the perimeter of the tree canopy and water DEEPLY and only occasionally. The perimeter is where most of the active feeder roots are. Drip lines are an ideal way to water around the perimeter of the tree and to let the water SLOWLY sink in.
HOW DO I WATER MY TREES?
HOW LONG? Rule of Thumb: water deeply to wet the soil at least two feet down. Use a tree spike or drip line.
HOW OFTEN? It depends upon the tree species, how established it is , etc.
Older established drought tolerant species: once per month in dry times of the year
Newer more thirsty trees: bi weekly in dry times
New trees: at least once per week on dry times.
Pasadena, Altadena, South Pasadena, Sierra Madre,
San Marino, Arcadia, CA