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“Snow” Your Facts: Protect Trees and Shrubs from Winter

Should the snow damage your trees and shrubs, seek professional help to recover their health.

When a frosty weather storm blows through, there is no guarantee trees and plants will survive. Injured trees can cause damage to your home or property. As the seasons change and temperatures drop, plants go into a dormant, or sleeping, stage. Some dormant plants cannot acclimatize or adjust to the weather that is upon them. This takes time, and a sudden hard freeze will cause severe injuries. Here are some signs to look out for to protect your trees and landscape: 

Frost Cracks

5 Ways Winter Storms Can Damage Your Trees, And What You Can Do About It

Frost cracks are longitudinal breaks in tree trunks. These are caused by sudden, huge temperature fluctuations. Once these occur, winter ice and snow easily gain entrance into the heart of the tree. These injuries also allow diseases to have easy springtime access to the plant. Frost cracks in the trunk may also lead damage to the life-giving roots. If the damage is severe enough, the tree cannot recover in the warmer weather.

Snow and Ice Breakage

Heavy doses of snow and ice cause the most damage by bending and breaking branches. If possible, remove heavy snow before it freezes to the limbs. Do this gently. Removing encased ice can cause additional damage; allow it to naturally melt off. The weight of excess snow can also cause plants to be split or uprooted.

Snow as Friend to Trees

Snow can cause its share of damage; it also can be your tree’s friend. Healthy trees with no frost cracks and no prior damage can be insulated by the snow cover on its roots and lower trunk. Snow is a very poor heat conductor. This reduces the effect of temperature changes and fluctuations. “Winterize” your trees by wrapping burlap around the base of the tree. This action keeps lowered temperatures and extreme cold from harming the tree.

Also, a little bit of limb breakage is not necessarily bad. Nature can prune the small twigs and dead branches that may have been missed in a pre-winter inspection. Of course, the more spindly the tree, the more care is needed to protect it from Old Man Winter.

Repairing Snow Damage

Should the snow damage your trees and shrubs, seek professional help to recover their health. Princeton Tree Care provides 5-star service that will leave you and your trees feeling happy! Let us assist you with post-winter tree and lawn care!

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