April 2017: Trees & Turf: Part 3

Here at Top Tree LLC, we offer our guidance, experience, and knowledge to all of our clients and potential clients with a high level of passion. We look forward to talking shop with you and no matter what, we welcome any questions you have regarding your trees and plants on your property.

Maintenance Practices
Trees and grass have different requirements. Given the closeness of tree and grass roots, treatment of one may damage the other. Many herbicides used in lawn care can cause severe damage to trees when misapplied. Herbicide drift on a Tri-Cities wind blown day and vaporization on hot July day can cause damage to non-target woody plants. While most herbicides do not kill tree roots, some, such as soil sterilants, do. Herbicides that can cause tree damage will note this on their labels.

Fertilizer applied to one plant will also be absorbed by the roots of a nearby plant. This can be a good thing, but excessive fertilization of either trees or turf can result in excessive above ground growth or reduced disease and pest resistance.

Lawn watering is beneficial to trees if done correctly. Trees need, on average, the equivalent of one inch of rain weekly, depending on the species. Frequent, shallow watering does not meet the needs of either trees or turf, and can be harmful to both.

Allow grass to grow to the top of its recommended mowing height to increase health and rooting depth and decrease irrigation, fertilization, and weed control requirements. Mowing no more than one third of the grass’ height and letting the clippings remain on the lawn promotes a healthy and vigorous lawn.

Special Situations

  • Placing fill soil around existing trees. Fill soil is frequently added around existing mature trees to cover roots and re-establish turf. Fill soil can reduce soil oxygen levels and suffocate tree roots. Consult an ISA Certified Arborist before adding soil over tree roots.
  • Establishing lawns around existing trees. Soil preparation prior to seeding can disrupt the upper four to six inches of topsoil. This may result in significant tree root damage and decline of the tree canopy.
  • Lawn watering in arid sites. In arid regions, the watering that is required to maintain turf is especially harmful to tree species adapted to dry climates. Excess soil moisture encourages root rot that can kill trees or increase the likelihood of uprooting by excessive winds.

Sparse grass growing around mower damaged, weak trees does not need to be a common sight in the landscape. With proper planning, selection, and management, the benefits of both trees and turf can be readily achieved.

Going Forward With Your Tree Care
We look forward to helping you with all of your tree maintenance and tree trimming needs. When, and if, you have any questions about your trees, shrubs, or any other greenery on your property, we can help. We look forward to hearing from you soon because we are your Pasco tree removal specialists.

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