Planting a new tree on your property and watching it grow taller and lusher each year is a beautiful and satisfying process. It is important to remember though that while your already-established trees do not need extensive maintenance, a newly-planted tree is going to need a little extra care for the first year or two especially.
So, what can you do to ensure your new tree grows to be as big and strong as its neighbors? Follow these guidelines below and you and your tree will be good to go!
Watering a New Tree
Proper watering is the most important of your new tree’s needs. More water is required during the first year (or sometimes two) of growth, so the roots can develop and establish in the soil. The root ball of your newly-planted tree should be kept moist, but not soggy. Feel the soil with your fingers or use a soil probe to check if the soil around the roots is dry. A new tree should receive water every 2-3 days, depending on weather conditions, and a total of about 10-15 gallons per week.
Mulching a New Tree
To protect your new tree’s growing roots and help retain soil moisture, you should apply a 2-4-inch layer of mulch when planting. Be sure to mulch out from the trunk and not up. Start your layer at least 3 inches away from the trunk and extend it out to the dripline.
Fertilizing a New Tree
As long as they are planted in adequate growing conditions, most new trees do not need any fertilizer. In fact, you should avoid fertilizing your tree for the first year, as the nitrogen in most fertilizers can burn the roots if they’re already getting enough nutrients. If after the first growing season your tree is growing poorly, you can start applying a light later next season according to the instructions on the bag.
Pruning a New Tree
Pruning during the first year after planting a new tree should be limited only to the removal of dead, diseased, or broken branches. Over-pruning while the tree is still establishing can actually slow the process and attract pests. Wait to start pruning for shape and structure until after the first dormant season.
Are you thinking of bringing in a new tree to fill out your landscape? Get in touch with Forest Tree Service! We’ve been beautifying properties all over Kingwood, Porter, and beyond in Texas since 1998 with our premier tree and shrub planting services. We’ll get you set up with everything you need to enhance your home exterior.
Contact us today to get started!