Fall Tree Care to Combat Summer Drought Stress

Tips for tree care professionals on the heels of the historic 2012 drought.

Tree Care Drought Stress 10757612

When water restrictions are lifted in the fall, encourage property owners to provide regular watering to their trees and shrubs—as long as temperatures remain above about 40° F.

Water in the morning. Doing so gives the water as much time as possible to soak into the ground before possible freezing overnight temperatures.

Apply a deep watering with a soaker hose to the root zone under the branches of the tree. The idea is to get water down into the 12-inch depth of soil where all the tree roots are.

The general rule of watering is to apply about 5 gallons of water to the tree, then an additional 5 gallons for every inch of trunk diameter. For example, a 4 inch-diameter tree will get 25 gallons of water. Water deeply like this once per week, or when the soil has drained and feels less moist.

The Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA) is a public and professional resource on trees and arboriculture with more than 2,000 member companies who recognize stringent safety and performance standards and who are required to carry liability insurance. To learn more, visit www.tcia.org.