Most landscape trees have a relatively protected life, since they are provided with access to plenty of water and fertilizer. One thing they aren't always protected from, though, is mechanical damage. This damage occurs from things like lawnmowers, string trimmers, and vehicles – anything that bumps and damages the tree. The following tips can help you avoid this type of damage so your trees remain healthy.
Tip #1: Install a mulch circle
The simplest way to avoid damage from mowers and trimmers is to make it so you never need to cut grass or weeds near the trunk of the tree. Remove the sod from the ground in a circle that is a few feet in diameter around the trunk. Then, lay down landscape fabric over the bare circle. This fabric allows moisture in but prevents weeds from growing through. Finally, cover the fabric with a couple of inches of mulch. You will need to replenish the mulch from time to time because it does break down over time, but this solution works well and it looks nice.
Tip #2: Don't tie things around trees
Ropes, chains and cords all rub on trees. This wears through the bark and causes damage. In severe cases, the rope or chain can wear off the bark completely around the trunk, creating a break in the bark so that nutrients can no longer be carried between the roots and canopy. If you must tie something around a tree, use a wide, soft rope or strap. Check it regularly and remove it or loosen it if it begins to constrict a growing trunk. Overall, it is a much better choice to use a fence or a stake to hold whatever item you were planning to tie to the tree.
Tip #3: Protect the tree from cars
There are two locations where a tree is most at danger from cars. The first are those planted near curbs. Not only could they be hit by the car, but car doors opening and closing into the trunk can cause damage. The second place are trees next to turns, such as tree by your driveway. One way to help protect the tree is to install a reflector upon it so that those turning or opening their door can easily see the tree after dark. You can also put a large decorative bolder between the trunk and the road. This will protect it from cars and also discourage people from opening their doors in front of the tree.
Talk to a tree service expert, such as at Tree Pruning for more help.
Trimming trees didn't sound hard, which is why I decided to try it on my own. After finding a ladder and renting a pair of pruning shears, I started working on my own yard. Unfortunately, about an hour later, I could tell that I had caused some damage. Some of the trees looked absolutely botched, which made me worry about things like disease and fungal infections. I realized that I needed to work with a real professional and learn a little more about tree service. This blog is all about how to avoid tree trimming mistakes, which is information I could have used a few months ago.