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Help Your New Jersey Trees Weather the Storm

This winter storm has taken us by surprise and our trees as well. Be sure to care for them correctly.

Preventing common problems from affecting your trees in winter can protect these valuable landscape assets. There are certain steps you should take now to help give your trees a better chance by preparing your trees for this winter in New Jersey.

Do a little pruning

Frozen ground makes it harder for trees to get enough of the nutrients and water they need. You can help by pruning away diseased, dead, or dying parts of the tree. That way the tree won’t waste precious resources trying to keep doomed parts alive.

It’s also a good idea to trim away parts that are susceptible to storm damage. A nice clean cut from a pruning saw is a lot less stressful to the tree than a jagged tear caused by high winds or heavy, wet snow and ice. A professional arborist can recognize structural weaknesses and know which limbs to remove and which to save with cabling or bracing.

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Give your trees some fall fertilizer

Fall is actually an ideal time to fertilize your trees as long as you use a low nitrogen fertilizer and time the application right. You don’t want to encourage a tree to produce tender new leaves just when it’s supposed to be going dormant! Fertilize in late fall – about a month after a killing freeze but before the ground is frozen.

Fall fertilizer improves disease resistance and promotes stronger roots. Any extra nutrients are stored in the roots until needed for strong growth next spring. However, too much of any good thing can be more harmful than helpful. It’s always best to do a soil test first to see which nutrients (if any) your trees need.

Don’t forget to water!

Trees need water all year long and that includes any time the ground isn’t frozen solid. Watering regularly until the ground is frozen will ensure your trees don’t go thirsty throughout the long winter to come.

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Tuck them with mulch

A layer of insulating mulch can moderate temperature changes in the soil. This means the soil stays warmer in the fall and doesn’t freeze as deeply in winter. Mulch also traps precipitation and keeps it available for the tree.

Keep the mulch a few inches away from the trunk to allow your tree to breathe and prevent rodents from damaging your tree. They’re less likely to nibble on the bark if they’re exposed to predators while they’re at it!

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Tip on the Choosing the Most Resilient Tree!

If you are looking into planting trees on your property or land but want to be conscious of which tree to choose to last through all the seasons choose a Maple tree.

A Sugar Maple or American, or Red maple tree are hardy, tough trees to choose from. They are able to survive through at least minus 30 or even minus 40 weather.

You can be at peace knowing that this choice in tree will be well worth it.

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