While trees are dominant ornamental features in your home landscape, they share this area with turfgrasses, shrubs, and other plants. All these plants are bedded in a common resource: the soil. The roots of trees, shrubs, turfgrass, and bedding plants intermingle and compete for water and nutrients. The roots of a single mature tree may extend well into your lawn or flower beds.
Every treatment applied to the lawn (fertilizer and herbicide, for example) can impact the appearance and vitality of a tree. Conversely, treatments applied to a tree, such as pruning and fertilizing, can influence the appearance and vitality of the underlying turfgrass. The care of each plant in a landscape can affect the health of every plant in that landscape.
Learn more about improving your tree’s health.
Plant Health Care
Symptoms, such as discolored leaves, dead branches, or early leaf drop, can prompt a call to a local arborist. Sometimes the cause of concern is a minor problem that is easily explained and corrected. Other times, the problem is more complex, with several underlying causes and a remedy that requires treatments extending over several years.
The solution: Plant Health Care. To better address situations such as these, arborists created Plant Health Care (PHC) programs. The objective of PHC is to maintain or improve the landscape's appearance, vitality, and — in the case of trees — safety, using the most cost-effective and environmentally sensitive practices and treatments available. Plant Health Care involves routine monitoring, preventive treatment, and a strong working relationship between the arborist and the property owner.
Learn more about plant health care.
Insects and Diseases
Insects and diseases can threaten tree health. As soon as you notice any abnormality in your tree’s appearance, you should begin a careful examination of the problem. By identifying the specific symptoms of damage and understanding their causes, you may be able to diagnose the problem and select an appropriate treatment.
Learn more about insects and diseases.
Trees and Turf
Woody plants and turfgrasses are critical design elements in urban and suburban landscapes. Trees and turf offer distinct personal, functional, and environmental benefits. The intended benefits of these plants may never be obtained, however, if potential incompatibilities are not addressed.
Thinning grass under large shade trees; large tree roots that hinder mowing; young trees that don’t seem to grow; tree trunks badly damaged by lawn mowers or string trimmers – all of these undesirable effects can be caused by tree and turfgrass conflicts.
Learn more about trees and turf.
Mulches are materials placed over the soil surface to maintain moisture and improve soil conditions. Mulching is one of the most beneficial acts a homeowner can do for the health of a tree. However, improper mulching materials and practices may have little, or even negative, impact on the trees in your landscape.
Learn more about proper mulching.
Mature Tree Care
Think of tree care as an investment. A healthy tree increases in value with age and pays big dividends by increasing property values, beautifying our surroundings, purifying our air, and saving energy by providing cooling shade from summer’s heat and protection from winter’s wind.
Regular preventative maintenance, designed to promote tree health and structural integrity, ensures a tree’s value will continue to grow and prevents the development of more costly problems in the future. An effective maintenance program, including regular inspections and necessary follow-up care – pruning, mulching, fertilizing, and additional soil management – can identify problems and correct them before they become damaging or fatal.
Learn more about mature tree care.