Trees can have a tough time in the cold. Young trees are especially vulnerable, since they don’t have an extensive root system in place yet, or thick bark to cover them like a coat.
What can do you to make sure your trees make it through the winter, not just intact, but thriving?
Those winter winds can dry out your trees. Some evergreens are particularly susceptible to this drying effect, which is compounded by the brightness of the winter sun. For these leafy evergreens, you can spray an anti-desiccant on their leaves. The waxy layer on the leaves can minimize the amount of water these trees lose in the winter months.
Water Your Trees
Before the ground freezes, water the trees that you planted most recently. If the soil thaws out at any point, water again.
Prune Your Trees
With the leaves off, you can see the trees’ branch architecture more easily – that means easier tree trimming. Finding problem branches in the winter and removing them is a smart step.
Block Your Trees
If you live somewhere where rabbits might gnaw on bark, then protect these young trees. Wrap their trunks with plastic — tree guards work best — working upward from the ground level. You can also keep deer away by putting chicken wire around the trunk bases. This will prevent the deer from rubbing up against those young trunks.
Wrap Your Trees
You can cover young trees’ trunks with crepe paper wrap, which can prevent the cracking that comes with freezing and thawing. Wrap from the bottom up to the lowest branches. Those cracks in the trunk are called “sunscald,” and you definitely want to prevent them.