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Maintaining Healthy Trees

One of the most important resources in the world is trees. They provide oxygen, they keep our air clean, and they are also a place for nature to live, to grow. They also look great in people's yards, giving anyone's space a more natural, more rustic look. There are so many different types of trees, and they can exist anywhere, from Uglich, Yaroslavl Oblast in Russia to Stouffville, Ontario in Canada. There are practically no reasons not to have a tree, however, some homeowners might be turned off by the potential maintenance that may come with owning a tree.


Well, there is some good news there. Owning a tree is actually a lot easier than people may think, as they are pretty resilient and often can fend for themselves. However, that isn't to say that there is no maintenance that goes into owning a tree. This article is going to take some time today in order to discuss the different ways one can maintain a healthy tree. After reading this, anyone will be an expert on the different ways one can keep a tree alive!





1. Keep In Mind Where The Tree Is Planted.


Yes, trees are one of the hardiest plants in the world. Yes, they can survive in some of the harshest conditions ever and can live for very long periods of time. However, the biggest threat to a tree can be where the tree is planted, or the conditions around the tree. More specifically, one of the biggest threats to trees is... construction.


Indeed, it is man that can kill not only kill new growing trees but trees that have been in the ground for years. Remember, the tip is "keep in mind where the tree is planted". What that means is even if the tree has been in the yard for 50 years, one errant construction project can mean its demise. Even if one is 50 feet away from the tree, there is still a chance of killing it.


How one may ask. Well, keep in mind that the tree's root balls extend pretty far away from the tree. They can grow up to 60 feet away from the tree, and anything could be damaging. Heavy equipment running over it, digging too deep, putting concrete over them. Any of the above, plus a lot more, could spell the end for a person's tree. It's important to talk to the contractor who is doing construction on a yard before, making sure they know that they should try and protect the tree.


The best advice is this: try to stake off at least 10 feet from the "drip line" of the tree.


SUNREADY WORD OF THE DAY: Drip Line.


Definition: Tree drip line, the area defined by the outermost circumference of a tree canopy where water drips from and onto the ground


Translation: Where the tips of the branches end.


Find out where the branches extend too and then try to measure at least ten feet from there. That may ensure that the tree is safe, although there are no guarantees. But at the very least every homeowner should try and do their due diligence.





2. Make Sure To Keep The Base Of The Tree Mulched


This is one of the most important tips to remember when it comes to tree maintenance. A lot of homeowners forget to regularly get mulch placed around the base of their trees, and end up paying the price. They end up with dead trees and are left wondering what they did wrong.


But what is mulch?


For those who aren't in the know, mulch is biodegradable stuff that helps keep trees healthy. It comes in many shapes and sizes but is often found in the form of wood chips. However, mulch can also be pine needles, shredded autumn leaves, cocoa hulls, straw or pretty much anything that can biodegrade.


What does mulch do?


Mulch is great not only for protecting trees from lawn equipment (scratching from weed eaters or lawnmowers can mean bark gets removed, resulting in a weaker tree), but it also keeps moisture in the soil, promoting tree growth. Not only that, but mulch is one of the best things a gardener can use in order to keep weeds out of their soil!


How does one mulch?





A lot of homeowners will get a contractor to mulch for them, as the process can be kind of a pain. But, for those who are more interested in doing the job themselves, the process is tedious but fairly easy.


I. There should be about 1 to 4 inches of mulch around the base of the tree. This is obviously going to depend on the homeowner, how the yard looks with that much mulch, etc.


II. Spread the mulch. Start putting down mulch about an inch or two from the base of the tree, and extend the layer all the way to the drip line, or in the very least three feet from the trunk.


And presto! That should be enough to keep the base of the tree healthy for some time.


Other tree tips:


- Don't overwater, don't over-fertilize. As this article has mentioned many times before, trees aren't the fussiest of plants and don't need all that much in the way of attention. In fact, a homeowner can make the mistake of overwatering or overfertilizing a tree, which could actually kill it.


- Prune when needed. Homeowners that see dead or diseased branches should immediately either climb a ladder and prune the tree themselves, or call a contractor who can do it for them. Diseased branches could spell the end of a healthy tree, and dead branches are just an accident waiting to happen.


And there we go! After reading this article, any homeowner in the world should be an expert at keeping their trees alive! Now, go out into the yard and start planting some trees! The world could use it, people could use it and best of all– any homeowner could use it.

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