Trees are dormant during Ottawa’s winter months, but they certainly experience the raw intensity of our harsh climate in this part of the world.
Extreme conditions can be stressful on trees, especially on young or newly-planted trees, which lack strong defence mechanisms like a thick bark or a solid root system.
Read on to learn how to help your trees survive the tough Ottawa winters.
Taking Care of Your Trees During Ottawa Wintertime
The winter weather in Ottawa is a recipe for disaster, especially if have recently planted your trees, as they will have to adapt to such harsh conditions for the first time.
These winter tree tips will give your trees their best chance at survival for the upcoming cold.
The cold season provides a great opportunity for examining and pruning the trees in your property.
In winter, tree structures can be easily seen, allowing you to identify any tree health issues or dead branches.
Tree pruning during dormancy also prevents disease spread.
Although there are many DIY jobs homeowners can do well, pruning is not really one of them, so be sure to contact a local tree care professional in Ottawa. Better safe than sorry!
Wrapping Trees for the Winter in Ottawa
When Winter sun warms a tree trunk by day and the cold night air freezes it, trees are sure to suffer.
Sun-scald can rupture tree bark cells, creating cracks in the tree trunk.
In order to protect your trees from the extreme temperatures, wrap them up, starting from the bottom, and leave the wrap until Spring.
Again, this might be an unsafe task to tackle by yourself, so hiring a qualified arborist to get the job done safely might be the best option.
Watering Your Trees
Therefore, you want to keep trees moisturized during the later autumn weeks and into winter – especially recently planted trees – until the ground starts to freeze.
Afterwards, water every couple of weeks if the temps are cold but there is no snow cover yet.
Benefits of Tree Mulching
Organic mulch is used to retain moisture in the soil, but also helps improve soil structure, drainage, and nutrient-holding capacity as it decomposes.
Add a thin layer of mulch anytime from late autumn to early winter, but do not pile it directly against the trunk.
Also, wait until the tree freezes to prevent mice from making your mulch their winter quarters.
Tree Clearing & Melting
If you see tree branches bending under the heavy weight of ice and snow and it poses a danger to immediate safety of person or property, you can address the lower tree limbs by attempting to remove the snow from the tree branches gently.
Do not try to break ice off junctions.
For the best and safest results, your best option is to hire Ottawa tree care pros.
Also, it’s best to keep rock salt away from your trees, as it interferes with their ability to absorb nutrients, oxygen and water.
Protecting Your Trees in Winter
Rodents, such as rabbits, love to gnaw the bark on young trees, exposing inner wood.
Protect your trees from them by wrapping their trunks with plastic tree covers past the snow line. Alternatively, you can cage the bottom of your trees with chicken wire.
If you have any questions on tree care or to hire Ottawa tree care pros for winter tree removal or tree pruning, contact Tree King today.