Droughts and unpredictable weather patterns affect trees in a wide variety of ways. Our experts at Stevens Tree Service answer many questions from urban planners, property managers, and residents about tree protection every month. In this article, our licensed arborists will detail how to protect your trees from the summer heat to prevent overheating symptoms like wilting, browning leaves, and stunted shoot growth, which could lead to tree death if left unattended.
Our work represents the values of the Tree Care Industry Association, and our arborists are all ISA-certified. Call our hotline today and experience the highest-quality tree care in Largo by Stevens Tree Service.
Strategies for Protecting Your Trees Against Summer Stress
Summer temperatures in most areas we serve around Florida stay in the upper 80s for weeks. As the climate becomes more unpredictable, our arborists think they could reach the 90s in a few decades. Drought, prolonged dry conditions, and rising environmental temperatures have pronounced long-term effects on trees, and some species require more seasonal care and attention.
The intensified heat of the summer sun changes soil-water availability, which stresses many tree species, leading to leaf shedding, dormancy, and poor fruit production. According to research from the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, moisture availability accounts for more than 80% of physiological variations in tree growth. The summer season radically alters soil moisture levels in most areas of Florida, and urban planners and residents need to prepare the trees in their properties for it.
Mulching the Soil Surrounding Your Trees
Mulching remains a popular forestry technique that protects entire trees in urban settings from defoliation, pest infestations, and other weather-related damage. In deciduous forests and woodlands, fallen leaves form a protective layer that shields the roots of young trees from moisture buildup, fungi, and seasonal insects. Urban trees do not have this privilege, so arborists artificially protect them with mulch, which includes buckwheat or rice hulls, wood shavings, or fresh-cut forage.
Mulching makes an excellent way to preserve the healthy moisture levels in the soil surrounding your trees through the hot, dry summer months. It also improves soil aeration, fertility, and structure as it decomposes.
Apply organic mulching material in a three-foot diameter circle on the soil surrounding young trees. For mature trees, mulch as far as the canopy covers. Layer it two inches thick, and keep it away from the tree bark to avoid fungi growth.
Prune and Remove Dead Branches
Summer brings about frequent storms, and pruning becomes your best defense against them. Our arborists traditionally prune trees during the winter when they lie dormant, but summers can dry out entire sections of larger trees and invite pests.
However, if you want to learn how to protect your trees by spotting nutrient-deficient sections that high winds will blow away, get professional advice from a licensed arborist. Improperly wounded trees are more likely to die from infestation than the summer heat.
Water Your Trees at the Correct Time of Day
Finding the correct times to water your tree plays an essential role in keeping them healthy through the summers. Water evaporates faster during the late morning to early afternoon hours, so trees won’t reap the benefits of additional soil moisture if you water them during these periods.
Some trees need daily watering, while some only need a few fluid ounces per week. We recommend installing an automated sprinkler or drip system, which could water your bushes, trees, and shrubs more slowly and consistently.
Consult With a Tree Care Expert Today
Contact our experts today, and learn more about how to protect your trees in the summer and know which trees are the most wind-resistant. Call the Stevens Tree Service hotline at 727-734-8733 today, and get a free consultation.