If you’re like me, you take a tree care very seriously, and the last thing you want to do is unknowingly harm your tree. We see these issues a lot so if you’re concerned about tree care, here are 10 things you may be doing to harm your tree that you just didn’t even know about.

10 Ways You May Be Harming Your Trees and Didn't Know

#1. Staking a tree.

Staking or “guying” means using stakes and rope to support a tree. Most trees don’t need support and if they do it’s only for a short time. By staking a tree could cause abnormal tree trunk growth, bark damage and actually cause a tree to be top-heavy because it’s not letting its roots ground itself the way it should be.

#2. Girdling a tree.

This means wrapping the bottom with plastic in order to protect it from lawnmowers or weed whackers, but it actually suffocates the tree. You would be better off surrounding the tree with mulch to prevent weeds from growing and retain moisture.

#3. Using too much mulch.

Too much mulch around the trunk of a tree can cover the root flare and cause the tree to suffocate as well. Keep it no more than 6 inches away from the tree trunk and a foot away from mature trunks.

#4. Using screws or nails on a tree.

Anything that penetrates the tree trunk can put at risk for disease or pest infestation. The tree will also try to heal itself and grow around the object making it dangerous to cut down the tree later.

#5. Pruning in the wrong season.

Every time my mother comes over she tells me to prune my fruit trees regardless of the time of year. But that is just not the case. It’s best to prune in early spring to get new growth started. Do not prune in the fall or winter.

Tree near power lines

By dno1967 ([1]) [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

#6. Planting trees near power lines.

Power companies don’t usually allow trees to touch the power line and they will probably have you cut the tree down or trim it in an unusual way. It’s best to keep them away from power lines if possible.

#7. Tying your dog to the tree.

This might seem harmless but it can actually damage the tree’s bark, especially if you have a large dog that pulls and tugs against the tree. If the bark falls off, it can make the tree susceptible to disease and insects.

#8. Using herbicides or pesticides.

They might keep the weeds and bugs away, but too much can harm your tree. It’s best to just use a good amount of mulch around the tree to prevent weeds.

#9. Covering the roots.

Building over roots can cause damage and cause the tree to die. Especially if you store harsh chemicals in a shed that’s over roots. These roots are what keep the tree alive so suffocating them can really wreak havoc on the tree.

#10. Planting things to close together.

When you plant a young tree, it’s hard to imagine how big it will get, but if you plant trees closer than about 6 feet apart, they will compete for food, water, and sunlight.

Keep these things in mind when pruning and caring for your backyard or property trees and remember, anytime you need tree removal service give us a call throughout the Puget Sound, Snohomish County, and King County area.