5 Tree Watering Tips You Need to Know
Nature seems to have tree watering down to an exact science. But how does the average homeowner get beautiful, lush greenery in their own backyard? You’ve seen your neighbors manage some of the finest foliage, and now it’s time you know these five secrets to tree watering so you can take your yard to the next level.
1. Know When to Water
Even with extensive research, you’ll find there is no “one-size-fits-all” schedule for tree watering. The time you need to spend watering your tree varies depending on size, weather conditions, and soil conditions. Your first step is to learn about these variables; then, you can build your custom watering schedule.
A surefire way to know if your tree needs water is by checking the soil. Ideally, the soil will feel moist without being waterlogged. If there hasn’t been any recent rainfall, you can use a garden trowel to check a few inches beneath the soil to see how saturated it is. Dry soil indicates your tree is ready for watering.
The outside temperature also plays a significant factor in when to water your tree. Trees take time to soak up the water, so your tree can lose a lot of precious water from evaporation.
A great way around this problem is to water in the morning or evening when the temperatures are lowest. Doing so gives your tree ample time to absorb most of the water.
2. Dig Deep
It’s not just about when you water your tree — it’s also how. The preferred method for tree watering is using a drip line. This watering method allows the water to penetrate deep beneath the tree, revitalizing the roots.
Using a drip line can also prevent you from losing too much water to evaporation, making your watering schedule much more flexible.
Drip lines also prevent disease since the water doesn’t stay on the plant’s leaves like it would if you were using a garden hose. For the most effective watering system, make sure your line runs out to the canopy, so the root tips are well-saturated.
3. Stay Consistent
Once you have a schedule that works for you and your tree, stick with it. It can be challenging if the weather is volatile — you don’t want to oversaturate your tree, either. Soil that is too dry or too wet can cause the tree to become stressed and make it more prone to disease.
Try to find a good balance between the two, always remembering to account for rain and adjusting your schedule as necessary. You’ll also want to water your trees year-round, provided that the air and soil temperatures stay above 40 F. Your trees are still growing and can certainly use the water when they go dormant.
4. Use the Magic of Mulch
Mulch is one of the reasons trees do so well in the wild. That sounds counterintuitive, as you can buy mulch at the store, but mulch is essentially a bag of organic matter. And if you look closely at trees in a forest, you’ll see they’re surrounded by organic matter that reintroduces nutrients into the soil as it decomposes.
Using mulch replicates the tree’s natural habitat of the forest floor, improving the tree’s health and preventing grass or other plants from affecting the root system. Make sure your mulch bed goes far enough out, ideally at least three feet from the trunk in every direction (more, if possible).
5. Know the Species
So much of the above advice is contingent on the species of tree you own; knowing which tree you have will drastically inform your tree watering schedule. Some trees need more attention and water, while others might be drought-tolerant and quickly adapt to a drier climate.
Regardless of the species, younger trees need more water to establish their root system. This means that even if you own a drought-resistant plant, you should still rely mainly on the soil’s feel to determine whether it needs to be watered.
Take the Guesswork out of Tree Watering
With these five tips for better tree watering, a lush, vibrant yard will be yours. And for an even more stunning landscape, call our landscaping experts. Reach out to us today to learn more about our maintenance and planting services!