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Yes, even healthy trees still need some attention while they’re in full summer leaf and winter is all but forgotten.



Dana Bossert

Coming from a hard-working Midwestern family, I've grown up with a strong work ethic and strong family values...

Coming from a hard-working Midwestern family, I've grown up with a strong work ethic and strong family values...

Jun 26 6 minutes read

Here are our best tips for taking care of your trees in summer.

You took care of everything on your tree-care list during winter and early spring, and now your trees are healthy, green, summer beauties that give you shade and uplift your spirits. Take a moment to congratulate yourself – then check your summer tree care schedule.

Check for Signs of Heat Stress

Heat stress during summer is common for many trees, so check yours for these heat-stress symptoms:

  • Wilting, yellow leaves
  • Fruit and flower drop, poor fruit development
  • Leaf and branch drop
  • Stress-reaction summer dormancy
  • Dead or brown leaf tips or leaf margins

Lam tree watering an evergreen tree

Heat stress may be accompanied by water stress, as hot weather means your trees’ roots are taking up more water – and doing it faster.

To prevent water stress and keep your trees prepared for the heat and dryness of summer and early fall, be sure to:

  • Provide irrigation, especially before a heat wave hits. If you have an irrigation system, now is a good time to check that it’s operating on a summer irrigation schedule.
  • Replenish mulch around a tree’s trunk and drip line as needed, remembering to keep it away from the base of the tree. We always have free mulch for the taking. Come by our facility anytime to load you own or give our office a call to get on the delivery list for a truck-full!
  • Avoid high-nitrogen, synthetic fertilizers that stimulate green growth while a tree is stressed and lacks the energy reserves to make new leaves.

Give Recently Planted Trees Some Extra TLC

If you’ve planted young trees recently, follow these important tips.

Young trees have small root systems that can’t reach very far into the soil to find water, and their small crown of leaves may struggle to make enough energy. Your recently planted tree will be experiencing its first hot summer and will need extra care to make sure it survives.

And if you’re already thinking ahead to the fall planting season, here are some great trees to consider:

Check for Summer Tree Pruning Needs

In addition to winter pruning (which is sometimes better for your trees), some light summer pruning can also be beneficial because it:

  • Removes summer growth that you don’t want, such as crossing or rubbing branches
  • Allows sunlight and air to move through a tree’s crown, discouraging pests and diseases
  • Increases fruit yields on semi-dwarf fruit trees by focusing energy on fruit instead of leaves

TIP: If you notice branches on your trees that you don’t want but you also don’t want to prune them right now, tie a tag or length of string around the branches so you’ll remember them for winter pruning.

Maintain Regular Garden Clean Up and Checkups

Trimming flowering shrubs and perennials is a regular summer garden task. While you’re out cutting back spent flowers, check your trees for any signs of insect infestations or disease.

  • Pests and diseases are always easier to treat when you catch them early. Check your plants regularly for some of these common summer problems:
  • Rake up debris from pruning or deadheading to limit places for pests to hide or fungus to grow.
  • Remove weeds, even if they’ve started to make seed heads. Because weeds compete for water and nutrients you want your trees to have, any reduction in weed seeds is a good idea! It’s especially important to remove any noxious weeds (such as leafy spurge and yellow toadflax) early, before they become more difficult to control. Learn how to identify Colorado noxious weeds here. And don’t forget that we offer noxious weed management programs to take care of it for you.

spider mite damage on aspen leaves in Evergreen, Colorado

Spider mite damage on aspen leaves

Be Firewise

Keep in mind that plant cuttings and debris that’s left around instead of being cleared away can become dry tinder. We support clients with fire mitigation plans and defensible space clearing. Defensible spaces help everyone by reducing the spread of wildfires.

Keep Up with Soil Amendments & Mulch

Making sure your soil has the optimal levels of mineral nutrients and organic matter is important to the health of your trees, especially as summer’s growing season coincides with the hottest weather.

Soil amended with compost retains water longer, keeping it available to roots. This long-term benefit can’t be achieved with synthetic fertilizers!

And always check that there’s enough mulch around the dripline of your trees because mulch:

  • Keeps moisture in the soil longer
  • Moderates soil temperature
  • Smothers weeds
  • Keeps away damaging mowers and string trimmers from tree trunks.

Organic materials like mulch and compost are designed to decompose and enrich the soil, so regularly replenishing them is important.

Don’t forget that we have free mulch for the taking, or you can schedule a mulch-delivery appointment!

Schedule Tree Work In Advance!

Summer is the busiest season for trees and for tree-care appointments! If you’d like some professional assistance with your trees’ summer care or want to start a garden-care plan that fits your needs, be sure to call ahead to ensure you get the next available appointment.

~Lam Tree Service

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