We have gotten rain around here for several weeks and I’m noticing it in some of my shrubs around the house. The starting to droop and leaves are starting to get a little bit brown on the tips. This definitely means it’s time to water and it might be a little bit too late for some of these bushes. So it got me thinking, how often should we be watering especially in a drought.
Coming up with a watering schedule for trees depends on whether the tree is new or established. More established trees have roots that go down much deeper, where there’s probably still quite a bit of moisture in the dirt. These trees may not need to be watered as often, but when you do water, it needs to be long, and well saturated.
Watering for new trees
This means trees that are two years or younger. They’re still growing and establishing their root system. The new roots are basically a ball under the trunk during the first few months and after that time, the roots will expand underneath the canopy. New trees should be watered about three times a week if they are in the ground. If they’re in a container, they should be watered about every other day. You want to water these trees for about 2 to 3 minutes each depending on the size.
Watering for established trees
After the tree has established a good root system, you don’t have to water is often. Roots usually are down about 18 inches and cover the area out to its canopy. Most of the time usual rainfall will be enough, but if it hasn’t rained in several weeks, you’ll want to check the ground’s moisture to see if the tree needs water. Take an 8-inch screwdriver and shove it into the ground next to the tree. If it slides and easily, your soil is moist enough. If it’s tough, it’s time to give it a good watering. Trees such as fruit trees need at least a good 10-minute watering about 2 to 3 feet from the trunk of the tree. If the tree sits on a slope, water uphill from the tree so that it drains into the soil towards the tree.
If there is a drought
If there’s a drought for several months, watering your tree is essential. A dead tree can be dangerous and cause a sudden branch drop, cause disease to set in, or it could make it brittle and ruin the ground around the tree. You want to use a soaker hose to penetrate deep into the soil and use as much mulch as you can outward from the trunk to preserve that moisture. At this point, depending on the age of the tree, a good hours worth of watering might be with the tree needs. Then you won’t have to water for another couple of weeks.
Watering your tree does take a little bit of planning and scheduling out. Mark on the calendar the last rainfall so you know how long it’s been since the tree has had any water. If you’re concerned that the tree may be hazardous or endangered give us a call for a quote on tree removal.
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