Being outside and caring for your trees during Florida’s scorching hot summer months may not sound like the most pleasant way to pass the days. But, the reality is that showing your landscape the proper care during this season will help them stay healthy and thriving come fall.
At Gaston’s Tree Service, we have kept trees in Gainesville and the surrounding communities growing strong since 1972. Follow our simple summer tree care tips to keep your trees in top shape year-round.
Tasks to Tackle
One of the best things you can do for your landscape in the summer is to inspect your tree’s health while their crowns are full, checking for rot, disease, or damage. Check for changes to the foliage so you can catch any potential issues early and begin appropriate treatment.
Mulching is an essential step for your Florida landscape that can be done anytime. This incredible yard addition serves many benefits, including the following.
- Reduces the occurrence of weeds.
- Stabilizes soil temperature.
- Conserves soil moisture.
- Nourishes the soil.
- Repels insects.
Some best practices to follow regarding your mulch application is to form a donut shape away from the base of the tree, avoiding the volcano method that leads to trunk rot and insect infestations. Keep your mulch layer around 2-3 inches, running in a circle of 1-2 feet around the tree.
Don’t depend on the afternoon showers in Florida to sufficiently water your trees, mainly if the trees are young or recently planted. Young trees need routine watering for health and prevention of disease, as well as preventing weak root formation and encouraging strong roots underground.
Trees require about an inch of water per week, so irrigation may be necessary to ensure they get enough. Be on the lookout for drought stress signs, including discoloring, curling, or wilting leaves. Soil should be routinely checked around 4-6 under the surface to ensure the soil is moist but not soaking.
Another important step in your summer tree care routine is ensuring that they’re properly nourished to support leaf and shoot growth and discourage diseases and pest infestations. Trees growing in a suburban environment often have increased fertilization needs than trees growing in natural areas such as forests.
Ideally, tree trimming should be done during the non-growing season. However, there are times when pruning in summer may be necessary, such as due to damage, decay, or disease. In these instances, the tree should be pruned for tree health and your safety. Further, trees that flower in the spring, such as magnolias, lilacs, and cherry trees, should be pruned in the early summer once they’re done blooming.
However, care should be taken to not over prune, which exposes trees to avoidable stress and sun scalding. Young trees are particularly prone to heat scalding and should be carefully pruned.
Trees should be inspected regularly during the summer months to check for pest infestations. Many insects are harmless to trees, but discovering their presence early lets you get ahead of controlling them.
The following pests are active during summer.
- Magnolia scale
- Spider mites
- Japanese beetles
- Giant Palm Borer
- Palmetto Weevil
Plan for Storms
June starts the hurricane season here in North Central Florida, so summer is the perfect time to access your trees’ safety. A certified arborist can guide you through whether your trees need cabling or bracing due to weak limbs or if removal is necessary. Cabling helps curb the excessive twig and leaf shedding common in maples, willows, birch, and cedar during summer.
Treat Your Trees in the Summer Sun
Following these 6 easy summer tree care tips helps your trees stay strong, vibrant, and healthy throughout the season as they thrive during the warm, drier months. Your trees can continue growing into the fall with a particular focus on proper moisture management.
While some of these tasks can be done yourself, it’s always a good idea to leave most of your tree care to the knowledgeable, caring team at Gaston’s Tree Service. We have certified arborists, the best equipment, and a dedication to customer service that will leave you loving your yard. Contact us to learn more about our comprehensive tree care.