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Heat and Tree Growth

This summer’s weather has been just as unpredictable as the rest of 2020. But according to Accuweather it looks like July, August and September are on track to be as warm as normal. So while your trees have probably been enjoying this brief respite, you should be aware of the signs and consequences of heat stress on your trees and how to combat it. 

  • Feel a bit tired and sluggish during a heat wave? So do your trees. When the temperatures rise allowing both the surrounding soil and atmosphere to lose moisture, trees begin to close their stomata, the tiny pores that absorb carbon dioxide during photosynthesis. Once absorbed, trees convert that harmful gas into oxygen and release it back into the air. When the absorption of carbon dioxide is slowed and less oxygen is released, the air we breathe isn’t as clean and the effects of global warming are increased. 
  • Signs that your trees may be struggling with lack of moisture include stunted growth, loss of leaves, remaining leaves may begin turning yellow or brown, drooping branches and a general overall look of wilting. If you begin seeing signs of heat exposure in your trees there are several ways to control the damage. 
  • Start by setting up a regular watering schedule. This should be done early in the morning before the heat of the day builds up. Most experts agree ten gallons of water for each diameter inch of a tree is the best way to ensure the tree is getting the recommended amount of moisture. It isn’t necessary to water on a daily basis if the soil around the tree is still moist from the day before. If necessary use a small garden trowel to check down about 2” into the surrounding dirt, if dry then it’s time to water. 
  • Setting up a soaker hose system is a quick and easy method of watering. Not only does it save time but it also may save water. The soil is watered evenly and slowly allowing all the water to be absorbed into the root system. 
  • Don’t discount the value of mulch. In addition to controlling weeds and staving off erosion, mulch also helps to keep the top of the soil from compacting, allowing water to be absorbed into the ground, instead of running off. Moisture that would normally be evaporated by the sun is immediately soaked down into the mulch layer, before trickling into the soil around the tree roots. 

For all your tree concerns, please connect with Out on a Limb Tree Service either online or by calling 864-270-8787. Out on a Limb will be happy to arrange a phone or online consultation, schedule a time to come inspect your trees and report back with a detailed treatment plan including an estimate. For additional information please call us today. 

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