WATER, WATER, WATER all year long. With the investment you have made, watering your trees is non-negotiable. You must water, even if you do not feel like it. Water is the most important thing you do for your tree. As long as plants are alive, they need water, even in the winter when they are dormant. Although the plants may be leafless, the roots are growing in preparation for the following spring. Consider how long you could live without water, plants are just the same, and if you are wondering how long that is…the answer is… only a few days.
Check your tree every day for the 1st two weeks. Water as needed and make sure to mark your calendar every time. You will start to see a pattern. You can go with the pattern for about a month, and then start checking all over again. Alternatively, you can just keep on checking every few days. If we have rainy or drought conditions, you need adjust your watering to suit the situation. BE AWARE that trees and plants can die as easily from too much water as not enough.
First of all, DO NOT RELY ON YOUR SPRINKLER SYSTEM!!!!! Relying on the sprinkler means you are not checking the soil moisture, and probably not watering enough, which voids your warrantee. Turn on the hose (we know that getting up to do it is the hard part). The flow coming out of the hose should be between a trickle and full blast. It should be strong enough to get the job done, but not strong enough to move the soil. Now, go inside and set the timer on your watch, oven, or computer (your can down load a timer) for 30 minutes. When the alarm goes off….turn the water off and mark your calendar, so you know when you last watered.
Use a spade or a trowel and dig a hole next to the edge of the root ball…not the edge of the planting area. This hole should be about 12 inches deep (from the tip on your middle finger to mid way between your wrist and elbow is about 12 inches). Reach your hand into the hole and feel how wet the ROOT BALL is. Grab some of the soil from the root ball and squeeze it. When you open your hand the soil, will either fall apart (dry) or stays in a clump (wet). If it falls apart, you need to water.
No one in the world can answer that question. There are too many variables. Type of soil, weather, exposure to wind, sun or shade, and type of tree…the list goes on. ONLY YOU can determine your soil moisture level. Therefore, YOU MUST TEST THE SOIL MOISTURE BEFORE YOU WATER.
- APPLY Carl Pool Root Activator once a month for at least 1 year. This is an organic product, with hormones, that trigger new root growth, which is what you want to happen.
- DO NOT APPLY synthetic root stimulators, which are just mild fertilizers.
- NEVER APPLY any lawn fertilizer containing ATRAZINE to your lawn. It cannot tell the difference between the roots of weeds or the roots of your tree. Since the roots of your tree will grow under your lawn, this is a huge no-no. Repeat after us….”I WILL NEVER USE WEED AND FEED (unless I get it from RCW, because they carry the one that has Trimec in it)”…for best results repeat this mantra 10 times a day. Atrazine is monitored in our water and causes amphibians to be born deformed.
- DO NOT APPLY any form of weed killer around your tree. Pull the weeds or grass by hand. Damage from a weed eater can kill your tree.
- DO NOT REMOVE OR CHANGE THE MULCH Leave it alone, you can add Black Humus if what we apply gets thin or washes away. After the 1st year, you can apply whatever mulch you like.
- DO NOT SURROUND your tree with any edging or stone rings. They can trap water and you might feel compelled to add soil or mulch, which is not advisable.
- NEVER USE mulch that has had ashes added to make it black. It is as alkaline as Drano. If the person selling it cannot tell you how it’s made black, or if there is no indication on the bag…DO NOT BUY IT even if it says “Organic” on the bag. Soot and ashes are considered organic.
- DO NOT PILE mulch up the trunk of the tree. Avoid “Death by Volcano”.
- DO NOT ALLOW children or pets to put their weight against the tree. This will damage new roots.
- DO NOT PLANT annuals, perennials, shrubs or allow grass to grow around the tree for the 1st year. The competition for water and nutrients slows the rooting process and increases the chances of over or under watering.
AS ALWAYS, CALL US OR COME IN IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS