If you’re new to looking after trees and not sure where to start – don’t panic! All you need to get started is a few basic pointers and you’ll be on your way to earning your green thumb. Just like us, trees benefit from some love and attention and a bit of TLC will go a long way to keeping your trees healthy, safe and looking their best. Here are our top tips for beginner tree care.
1. Choose The Right Trees
If you are just starting your garden and choosing trees to plant, that’s great! You’re in a great position to get it right from the beginning and select a tree that will suit your space. Have a look at the area you have for your new tree. How big is it? What are the conditions? Will the tree get direct sun? Will it be shaded? Do you want a flowering or fruit tree? How much time do you want to spend maintaining your tree? A great place to start is by looking at which native trees appeal to you and will fit your space, they will naturally thrive in your conditions and will probably mean less work for you!
Be sure to ask for advice and get recommendations from the experts – your local Arborist or nursery, don’t just make a random selection or pick what looks nice. Doing a bit of homework will go a long way and selecting the right tree for your yard and its conditions, will mean less work and potential headaches for you down the track.
Make sure you give your new tree plenty of room to grow and don’t plant too close to your house or other structures.
2. Know Your Trees
Looking after your trees is easier if you know what type of tree you have. Some trees like more acidic soil conditions, some prefer more alkaline. Some trees will want direct sun, some will want more shade. Some trees will benefit more from pruning at certain times of the year for example. Some species are more prone to different pests and disease so you can be prepared if you know what you’re up against. If you’re unsure, there are lots of tree identification tools online to help, or have your local Arborist come and identify them for you.
Pruning is one of the best things you can do for your trees – when it’s done correctly. Pruning dead, diseased or dying branches helps keep the tree strong, healthy and safe. Pruning encourages new growth, fruit and flower production and lets in light and air. Pruning can be used to shape a tree, improve its structure and enhance strength. As a beginner, it’s not generally recommended you attempt to prune your tree yourself until you know exactly what you’re cutting and why. Pruning done badly can actually damage and weaken your tree, leaving it at higher risk of disease, pest infestation and weakened structure. It’s also physically demanding and can be very dangerous, depending on the size of the tree and you will also need to have the necessary tools and equipment.
When you’re just starting out, it’s a great idea to hire an Arborist who will expertly prune your trees, promoting their health and vitality. Professional Arborists have the skill, knowledge and experience for optimum tree care, plus they come fully equipped with all the tools for the job, and they take all the mess away once the job is completed. Too easy!
4. Water And Fertilise
Make sure your tree gets plenty of water, especially over the hotter months. Check the soil – is it extremely dry or cracked? This is an indication your tree is under stress and in need of a good drink. Regularly water your trees in the early morning or late afternoon to allow water to be properly absorbed. Don’t over soak them though, you don’t want the soil to be sodden as this can lead to issues. You may also want to apply a good, preferably organic fertiliser especially for newly planted trees, but be sure to use a fertiliser that is suited to the needs of your tree. If at all unsure, ask for advice from a professional for the best results.
Mulch is amazing stuff and trees love it! It’s relatively inexpensive, easy to apply and has so many benefits. Mulch helps regulate temperature, retain moisture and nutrients in the soil, assists in keeping pests and weeds at bay and it looks and smells fantastic! There are some rights and wrongs when it comes to applying your mulch. Don’t pile mulch up immediately around the trunk of the tree, leave a gap of approximately 15 – 20 centimetres. And don’t over-do it – too much mulch can prevent oxygen entering the soil and essentially suffocate the tree. A layer that is 5 – 10 centimetres high is plenty. Again, if you’re at all unsure, ask for advice.
6. Regular Arborist Inspections
Your trees will absolutely benefit from regular Arborist inspections. An Arborist will be able to identify any issues with your trees long before you do, and will let you know exactly what needs to be done to ensure the health and safety of your tree. Sick trees can be dangerous trees, and unless the appropriate work is carried out you could have a tree that is at risk of falling over or losing a heavy limb in the next big storm.
Get Help From The Professionals
If you’re just starting out, let Aussie Tree Solutions give you a helping hand. Our team of friendly, professional tree care experts have been taking care of Brisbane and beyond trees for over 40 years.
Whatever the issue, we’ve got the solution! We provide a full range of tree care services from pruning, mulch and tree removals, to consulting services and everything in-between. Call Aussie Tree Solutions anytime, 24/7 and ask for a free quote on our tree care and maintenance services.