Landscaping your lawn may be one of the most relaxing and satisfying tasks of being a homeowner—yet there is so much to remember, especially regarding tree care around the year, that it can get a bit too confusing. One of the more puzzling aspects of tree care is whether or not to fertilize your tree—and the answer actually depends largely upon the age of the tress in question.
The first thing to know about tree fertilization is that it is best to avoid fertilizing when trees are newly planted and in their first growing season—however, in most other cases, appropriately timed fertilization is a great idea.
Trees are often neglected when it comes time to fertilize the yard in the spring. Young trees that are not newly planted, particularly those with a trunk diameter of less than six inches, can benefit from regular applications of fertilizer. However, you need not panic if you forgot them last spring—they usually won’t die if they have to rely on their own resources. However, it is in your sewer system’s best interests that your trees get the nutrients and moisture they need—otherwise the roots may just decide to get what they need from your water pipes. Tree root systems extend for a long distance, and they can crack or destroy sewer pipes if left to find nutrients on their own.
Keep in mind that more mature trees require a lot less fertilizer than young trees because they grow much more slowly, but they still benefit from the process. A tree of any age may be getting acceptable nutrients from the soil already—the quality of your soil depends on your region, among other factors—but generally, all trees gain from additional fertilizer. In fact, a healthy, strong tree is much less vulnerable to disease, insects, and inclement weather.
As for timing, generally you should fertilize your trees in October, or in April as soon as the frost is over. By fertilizing in the fall, some of the nutrients will have a chance to be absorbed by the roots and will already be in the ground when the roots resume functioning in the spring.
So do you need to fertilize your trees? Well, no, you don’t NEED to, but if you want healthy, beautiful trees that will last for generations, it is a good idea to fertilize them regularly. Call in the pros if you want your tree care done right—at Tree Doctor, our experts know exactly what your trees need and when, so give us a call if you’d like to learn more about what we can do to beautify your property.