Best Trees to Plant for Shade

shade tree

Having shade trees in your yard has many wonderful benefits. Underneath a full-grown shade tree is the best place for a backyard BBQ or for children to play outside. It will also keep your home cooler during warmer months of the year.

To get the full benefit of shade trees, you need to plant the right species and care for them properly.

MA Tree Trimming has recommendations for the best trees to plant for shade, and some expert advice on maintaining your shade trees so they grow strong and healthy.

Planting Trees for Shade

All trees can provide shade, but there are some types of trees that are built for optimal shade. These types of trees typically have a thick, wider canopy that extends out nearly as far as it does upward.

Below, we’ve provided examples of shade trees depending on whether they would be best suited for your front or back yard.

Back Yard Shade Trees

Shade trees in the back yard are primarily for your own benefit. Neighbors and passersby probably won’t see these trees very much, so they can be planted purely for your enjoyment.

Besides just shade, these trees can provide year-round color and some extra privacy.

Here are a few popular options:

  • Magnolia
  • Sugar maple or silver maple
  • Weeping willow
  • Weeping cherry
  • Red oak

If you have the space, a live oak is a fantastic choice. Live oaks are said to be the fastest growing shade trees, and are able to get very large. A mature live oak is able to grow up to 80 feet tall and as much as 100 feet wide.

A lot of these back yard tree suggestions get extremely large, so you need to do a little research to determine if the tree will have enough space to reach maturity.

If there is not enough space, the tree’s root system can destroy your fencing or home foundation. You will also have to prune the tree every year to keep it from being overgrown. A tree that is too big for its yard will probably have to be removed, which is an inconvenient and sometimes expensive situation.

Front Yard Shade Trees

In the front yard of your home, you are planting trees for your enjoyment as well, but these trees will be a lot more impactful for adding curb appeal and value to your home since they can be seen.

Choose shade trees for the front yard that are somewhat smaller so they don’t overshadow your home. These trees should pair with your landscaping in color and size, while still providing plenty of shade for front yard relaxation and play.

These are some of our favorites:

Red maple
River birch
White oak
Ginkgo tree

These trees are colorful throughout the year, and they’ll showcase even more color in the fall months.
Another great option for your front or side yard is the ‘Green Giant’ Arborvitae. This hedge-like tree can be planted in a row with others to provide privacy and shade.

With this advice in mind, we encourage you to plant what you like. In all honesty, any type of tree can be a “shade tree.” so long as the trees you choose are suitable for the climate in Massachusetts, they will provide your home and landscaping with shade.

Benefits of Planting Shade Trees

The reasons to have shade n your yard are numerous — there are a few that you probably wouldn’t automatically think about.

Shade, Obviously – When temperatures get too hot, you don’t need to hide indoors if you have a nice, shady yard. Set up a chair or hammock below your biggest shade tree and relax outside as long as you like.

Climate Control – Trees can control the temperature in your yard and inside your home. Not only will trees protect you from the glaring sun, but they can also make it feel 10-15 degrees cooler below their canopies. This leads to less solar radiation on your roof and siding as well, which might result in lower energy costs!

Better Air Quality – Trees produce oxygen and expel pollutants from the air, so there is cleaner air surrounding your home. Arbor Day Foundation research reports that one mature tree absorbs around 48 pounds of CO2 from the air.

Shelter for Animals – If you’re into bird watching or think squirrels and chipmunks are adorable, your trees can provide them all they will need to build a shelter, find nearby food and raise babies.

Fun – What child doesn’t love a backyard tree house or tire swing? If you have small children, shade trees can provide hours of fun and joyful memories.

How to Care for Shade Trees

Caring for shade trees is simple as long as you’ve chosen the right species for the climate in Massachusetts. Trees are strong and hardy after the first few years, demanding little attention or care.

Consult a certified arborist from MA Tree Trimming if you have questions about the care of your trees, or even to help you decide the perfect tree for your property.

After you have chosen the best shade tree(s) for your yard, follow this easy care guide until your shade tree is fully grown.

Planting Your Shade Tree

The east, west and south sides of your property get the most sun, so plant your new trees on one of these sides of your yard. This is two-fold: 1) the trees will provide the ideal amount of shade and 2) they will also receive the most amount of sun to grow healthy.

Trimming Your Shade Tree

Trim during the first year or two after you first plant the tree in order to shape it and help it develop a strong structure. To be safe, and for the best results, call MA Tree Trimming for tree trimming in Massachusetts. A certified arborist will arrive at your home and deliver professional care for the tree.

Watering Your Shade Tree

Watering a new tree is very important. This helps them form a deep and strong root system and will give the tree stability in the long run.

Fertilizing Your Shade Tree

Homeowners should fertilize a shade tree the same way you would any other type of tree in order to promote healthy growth. Fertilizer is not a requirement, but it can assist in helping your tree to grow faster and produce more leaves, which are the primary source of your shade.

We hope this information was helpful! Remember, when it is time to trim or prune a new shade tree, MA Tree Trimming can help! Call and a certified arborist in Massachusetts will visit your property, assess the tree and decide the proper maintenance plan for its long-term health and growth.

Tree Trimming Mistakes to Avoid

tree pruning mistake

Tree pruning is best left to the pros. It’s dangerous work, climbing trees, using chainsaws and dropping heavy tree limbs to the ground; and it is sometimes dangerous for the tree too. Trees that aren’t pruned correctly can suffer from a lifetime of problems.

Rather than putting yourself and the tree at risk, hire someone who is knowledgeable and experienced to do it for you.

This will result in much healthier trees and a safer environment near your landscaping for many reasons:

  • Healthy trees are stronger and less likely to cause damage during severe storms
  • Cared for trees won’t attract or spread parasites and diseases
  • Trimmed trees produce more flowers or fruit
  • Pruned trees offer shade and allow air to flow through their canopies and your property

MA Tree Trimming highly encourages trimming trees that are very close to your home or those that are an integral part of your landscape.

Is Tree Pruning Necessary?

It is not required. But it is beneficial. Trees are hardy and can grow on their own across the world, in many different climates and locations, without being pruned.

However, there are a lot of benefits of professional tree trimming, so it’s recommended for any trees that you care about. This includes sentimental trees, fruit trees and flowering trees or trees that offer an important service for your home, such as shade or wildlife habitat.

Tree Pruning Gone Wrong

Tree pruning is a complicated task. You need the correct equipment and a lot of knowledge to guarantee the project is done correctly. The vast majority of homeowners don’t have any of these!

But that’s not a problem, because there are plenty of companies available who know how to properly trim trees for an affordable price to you including all arborists throughout Massachusetts we work with!

Here are the 5 most common mistakes people make when they attempt DIY tree pruning that can lead to many tree problems. These are things that an experienced arborist from MA Tree Trimming will know, and that’s the reason why their services are worth paying for!

Trimming Too Much

When done the right way, tree trimming is a never-ending process. Beginning when your trees are only 2 or 3 years old, they should be trimmed by an expert if you care about them and intend to keep them healthy.

A huge mistake people often make when trimming trees themselves is cutting too much of the tree at a time. This happens because they let the tree’s growth get out of control and try to correct it all immediately. Ideally, you should only cut off 5-20% of the tree’s crown at a time. It is much easier to do this during a season that there are no leaves, but a certified arborist is able to properly prune trees any time of year.

Removing Bark from the Tree

When you cut a tree limb and gravity starts to pull it down, it can rip bark from the tree trunk right along with it. This exposes the tree’s inner layers, putting the tree in danger of contracting diseases and making it easier for insects to scurry their way in.

To stop this from occurring, an arborist makes special cuts beneath large branches before making their actual removal cut. Knowing how to place these small cuts takes pressure off the branch collar and limits the stress at the exact point of the main cut so the branch doesn’t rip.

Pruning in the Wrong Place

A trained tree specialist knows where to cut each limb to protect against damage. This cut should be done just beyond the branch collar, the exact place where the branch connects to the tree trunk.

Trimming too close to the branch collar exposes the tree to insects, decay and mildew. Cutting too far from it leaves a stump when the tree has recovered. Most DIY tree pruning leads to an improper cut, leaving either aesthetic or structural damage.

Pruning Big Branches

Branches any larger than 4 inches in diameter shouldn’t be pruned unless it is necessary. Cutting off a branch of this size can lead to imbalance in the tree and expose it to pests and rodents and rot as the tree recovers from losing such a large branch.

Conservative pruning every year guarantees that your tree trimmer only has to remove branches that are 2-3 inches in diameter, which produces a more attractive shape for the tree and less chance of damaging the tree or exposing it to disease and insects.

Topping the Tree

Tree topping is no longer a type of pruning, and for good reason! With this process, tree trimming companies would just cut the top off of the tree to get the desired height. It was neither attractive nor was it beneficial for the tree, so the majority of tree care companies do not practice tree topping currently.

As a DIY tree pruning, you may think this is a good way to lower the height of your tree with only one cut, but once you have cut off the top of a tree, there’s almost no chance it will ever return to a natural shape.

The Solution? Call MA Tree Trimming

Here’s the truth. Your tree may never recover from poor trimming.

Attempting this job yourself might seem like a way to save money, but you could end up with way more cost trying to revive damaged trees, so it’s much safer (and more economical in the long run) to hire a certified arborist in Massachusetts from MA Tree Trimming.

Limbs will not grow back. The tree will grow more, but not in the same places, which causes strange shapes that could take years to fix. The tree might end up looking bad for the rest of its life, all because of a single trimming error.

Bad pruning could also lead to death of the tree. Removing too many limbs (and, therefore, leaves) can alter the tree’s photosynthesis process, which means it won’t get all of the water it needs or enough sunlight and carbon dioxide to continue growing.

Cutting too many branches might also send the tree into a state of shock. Shock can be overcome, but it takes a lot of patience and care. Even with the right maintenance, a tree undergoing shock may still die.

Avoid all of these tree pruning mistakes and call MA Tree Trimming to speak with a tree care specialist in Massachusetts able to come up with a long-term plan to ensure your tree continues to blossom and look beautiful for years to come!

7 Common Tree Problems & Diseases

Trees are living organisms, so that means that they can become “sick” just like people and animals can. A disease or other tree issue may take a while to show up because of the sheer size of the tree, and once symptoms become obvious, it could be too late to save the tree.

A professional arborist from MA Tree Trimming can identify and treat common tree problems so that you have a much greater chance of saving the tree. Learn about our service here. Not only can an arborist keep a tree from dying, but they can also help trees get more healthy growth and bloom more flowers or fruit with professional tree pruning.

Have you ever noticed a tree on your lawn that has always seemed OK but suddenly seems like something is wrong? In the next section, we’ll explain some of the most common tree issues and what these symptoms mean for a tree.

If you notice any of these things, act fast for the best chance of saving the tree and the ones around it.

Tree Diseases & Common Problems

These 7 things are the most frequent issues addressed by experienced arborists in Massachusetts. The moment you think one of these things could be wrong with your tree, call someone with the knowledge and tools to help!

Tree Diseases

Leaf Rust – Leaf rust is actually a fungus that is very common in both trees and plants. The name comes from the brown and yellow spots this disease produces on the leaves.

Leaf rust is bad because it interferes with the leaves’ photosynthesis, the process by which it breathes. Leaf rust can be treated with fungicides and selective trimming of the diseased leaves. It might be necessary to cut off entire branches with leaf rust.

Witches’ Broom – This tree disease results in a large grouping of twigs, dead leaves and branches that resemble a broom shape. It is caused by pests, unusually wet weather or fungus. The formation of a clump of leaves and twigs is the tree’s reaction to infection or danger.

Some instances of Witches’ Broom are deadly for the tree, while others are only considered a growth malformation. An arborist can tell you for sure.

Mildew – Mildew is a type of fungus that grows on almost anything in wet conditions, but even when the wet conditions are over with, mildew can persist and thrive. Mildew usually appears as a powdery texture, typically white, and it often shows up on the leaves of the tree first.

The trick to treating mildew is to use a fungicide that contains sulfur. This will remove the current mildew and help to stop future mildew growth on the tree. You might also need to trim the tree to remove limbs, fruit, flowers and leaves that were affected by the mildew

Gall – Gall is a tree condition that occurs when insects build small nests on the leaves or twigs of a tree to leave their eggs in. Most types of galls are not harmful to the tree, but none of them are attractive.

Gall will appear as bumps on the tree, in various sizes. They are often white, brown, gray or some color in between.

It is not necessary to treat the tree for galls, but they can inhibit the growth of young trees. Treat galls by killing the insects. You should also clean out from under the tree when the leaves fall off, since this is where the insects live during winter.

Other Tree Problems

Poor Pruning – There’s a science to tree trimming, as well as many types, and if you don’t know what to do, you could harm the tree beyond recovery. Consider the type of tree, season and other factors. Under-pruning (or a lack of pruning at all) is just as big of an issue. Only a certified arborist should be trusted to trim trees to keep them healthy.

Lack of Water – New trees can be significantly affected by drought. If you want to plant new trees on your property, you will need to supplement the amount of water they get from rainfall. A tree that doesn’t get enough water will have its growth inhibited. The first symptom you are likely to noticed is scorched or dry leaves. Find more tips for new trees here.

Too Much Sun – Do some research before planting trees in a sunny area. Most types of trees can handle it just fine, but too much sun can happen to any tree if the sun is too hot for a long period of time and rainfall is light. A tree that is getting a lot of sun needs extra water to prevent wilting, drooping leaves.

Certified Arborist Services in Massachusetts

An experienced arborist from MA Tree Trimming will quickly diagnose what’s going on with your sick tree and come up with a plan to save it if at all possible.

Here are the things an arborist is trained to do:

  • Evaluate trees from below and from the branches of the tree if possible. Climbing into the canopy is often necessary to see exactly what is leading to the symptoms.
  • Treat your tree with fertilizers and additives in the dirt or solutions sprayed on the leaves. The arborist will have knowledge about the disease affecting your tree and the best treatments.
  • Prune trees to remove dead or diseased branches and to help healthy growth. Even if heavy trimming is needed, they will know how to cut off branches so that the tree survives both the issue and the pruning.
  • Remove the tree from your lawn if there is no chance to save it. The worst case scenario is that the tree is too far gone, and cutting it down is the best way to protect your home and surrounding landscape.

They can also inform you about the trees that you have om your property and how to best maintain them so you don’t return to the same situation again.

Some tree issues look very similar to each other, requiring a professional opinion to correctly identify and correct the problem. If your trees are looking dry, unhealthy or disfigured, call a professional arborist from MA Tree Trimming for an inspection before it’s too late.

What is the Best Season for Tree Pruning?

seasonal tree pruning in massachusetts

When it comes to the question, “What time of year is best for tree trimming?” The answer is often indirect.

The type of tree will dictate when many species are able to be pruned, along with pest population and activity, local tree and plant diseases and other types of plants and trees in the landscape.

With the guidance of a professional arborist in Massachusetts, you can determine which time of year is ideal for pruning your trees to prepare them for success next season and beyond.

Best Season to Trim Trees

Without any other context, MA Tree Trimming recommends trimming trees in the winter. This ranges from November to March in most areas. Winter is best because the trees are mostly dormant, so trimming will lead to the least amount of harm, if any.

There are several benefits to pruning trees during the winter:

Lower risk of insect damage and disease – Pests and plant diseases are mostly inactive during the winter in Massachusetts. Throughout the remainder of the year, anything from insects to fungus can affect a freshly trimmed tree because the tree is most susceptible and these issues thrive when there is warmer weather.

Easier to see the shape of the tree when there are no leaves – Leaves get in the way of your arborist from seeing the complete shape of your tree. When the branches are bare, it is a lot easier to see diseased or dead limbs and branches that are touching versus those that are just too close to each other.

Trees can heal before spring – By performing major pruning in the winter, your trees have several months to rebuild callus tissue on the ends of the remaining branch collar. By the spring season, you’ll barely be able to tell where the branches were removed, and the tree will be able to use its energy to produce brand new, healthier leaves, fruit or flowers instead of healing new cuts.

Less chance of harming surrounding landscape – Most of the surrounding trees and plants will also be dormant during this time, so there is less risk of doing damage to them. Most of the time, a tree is surrounded by annual plants in the warmer months, but there are no plants to be disturbed in the winter since these annuals have already died out.

Do All Trees Need Pruning?

Yes, all trees benefit from annual trimming. Tree trimming in the winter is good for the trees, but it is also a precaution for the safety of your landscaping and your family. Let us explain:

Trimming Makes the Tree Stronger

Dying and diseased branches are cut off, as are stubs that are susceptible to pests and disease. Limbs that can rub against each other are also pruned so they don’t weaken one another or create an open wound on the tree.

Trimming trees every winter is also a good way to get expert eyes on the health of your trees so that early signs of decay, disease and pest infestations can be identified and dealt with as soon as possible.

A Well-Maintained Tree Serves Its Purpose Better

When a tree becomes overgrown, it starts to be hard for water and nutrients to get to every limb. This can leave the tree looking weak and sick and definitely not doing what it’s intended to do.

Trimmed trees, on the other hand, blossom more fruit, healthier leaves and provide better shade. They are much fuller and healthier and less likely to cause landscaping issues. So regardless of why you planted a new tree, pruning each winter will improve the results you desire from it.

Trees are More Beautiful After Pruning

If the curb appeal of your landscaping is important to you, tree trimming is a necessity! Pruning trees creates an attractive, uniform size and shape. This is important if you have several similar trees on your property.

Eliminating lower branches and upper branches that grow at improper angles improves the overall beauty of the tree while also promoting tree health.

Less Chance of Dropping Branches

Tree pruning – done the right way – helps the remaining branches to grow healthier and stronger. Therefore, storms and other inclement weather in Massachusetts won’t affect your trees the same way they would an unkempt tree. Your home and family will be safer living under and around trimmed trees.

Another safety concern for overgrown trees is that they can block the view of traffic lights, road signs and driveways. Tree trimming, crown raising and other certified tree care services will keep the tree at a manageable size and prevent it from blocking various views.

Call MA Tree Trimming for Tree Pruning

Hiring a professional arborist in Massachusetts gives you access to their expert knowledge on the subject of tree trimming. We highly recommend relying on their expertise if you have trees on your property that you’d like to keep healthy for a long time.

An arborist doesn’t only look at the immediate situation. Instead, an arborist will take time to research your trees and understand their unique scenario (including their location and other factors that could put them at risk). After collecting all the information, an arborist will suggest a long-term plan based on the trees’ unique needs and stick to that plan until your goals for your trees are met.

This plan could require many years to implement, but rest assured, it will result in healthy trees that you and your family can enjoy for generations.

This type of ongoing care will result in healthy tree growth, help your entire property fight off plant diseases and improve fruit or flower production from trees. It will also strengthen your trees so there is not as much risk of falling trees or branches.

Being proactive about tree pruning can save you a lot of money over time too. Preventative care is far more cost-effective than the cost of emergency tree services, storm damage restoration or restoring an ill tree of a disease that has spread out of control (and one that was easily preventable).

If you care about the health of your trees and the beauty of your property, trust a certified arborist for tree trimming and maintenance from MA Tree Trimming. Find our service area here. We work with arborists across the entire state of Massachusetts. Call now!

Types of Tree Pruning

tree pruning types

Tree pruning in Massachusetts is an important professional service that can beautify and reinforce trees so they can withstand insects, diseases and severe weather – and look good doing it!

Pruning must be completed if you want a healthy tree, but it needs to be done correctly by someone who has experience in what they’re doing. Like a certified arborist from MA Tree Trimming. You may be able to prune trees safely while they are still small and developing, but you also may be doing permanent harm to the tree.

To safely prune trees, you should know all of the following:

  • When to prune your species of trees
  • How much of the tree can be pruned at at once
  • Where to cut each branch so you do not harm the tree

Removing too much from a tree could kill it or result in structural damage, but conservative trimming done every year benefits trees in many ways. Professional pruning improves the appearance of trees, makes them healthier, removes dead or diseased limbs and expedites fruit or flower production.

For the best results, pruning should be performed annually, but as trees get older, you might be able to go two years between major pruning services. Regardless of how regularly you have your trees pruned, make sure your arborist is qualified to perform the type of tree pruning your trees need. This won’t be a problem if you call MA Tree Trimming in Massachusetts!

Types of Tree Pruning Methods

There are 7 different ways to correctly trim a tree so that it grows stronger and healthier every year.

Depending on the size, species and health concerns of your trees, one pruning method could be more effective than another, but each technique has various benefits.

Crown Thinning Your Trees

Crown thinning is typical for larger, overgrown trees in Massachusetts. This process eliminates weak branches within the crown to allow more light and air flow throughout the crown. Air flow is important for disease prevention.

This tree pruning method also eliminates branches that are touching so they no longer rub against one another and break or cause weakened areas that can be an entry point for insects and pests. Branches that grow at strange angles are usually removed during crown thinning.

Crown Raising Your Trees

This tree trimming method only removes branches at the lower part of the crown so limbs start higher up on the trunk. Allowing low branches to get too big makes them very difficult to remove, and they can pull nutrients away from the top of the tree, resulting in less fruit and a weak tree.

There are a variety of reasons you may decide to raise the crown of a tree. Many times, it is done in order to clear the line of sight for automobiles and pedestrians, but it can be done to increase space for landscaping underneath the tree.

It is a common technique for large trees that are too close to homes and other buildings.

Crown Reduction

Crown reduction reduces the overall size of the crown from its exterior edge. It shortens branches vertically and horizontally to maintain the tree at a manageable size. By lowering the size of the crown, you can remove the need to cut the tree down because it will no longer come into contact with traffic lights, power lines or street lights.

Even when the tree isn’t near structures like those listed above, crown reduction can make the tree look much better because it removes irregular growth. This is a great solution for trees that are different ages but are supposed to look consistent.

Crown Cleaning

Often referred to as deadwood pruning, crown cleaning is a minimally invasive type of tree pruning technique that removes dead, broken or diseased branches so that the remaining sections of the tree can grow normally. These limbs can only create issues over time.

Crown cleaning makes the tree look much better, and it prevents limbs from rubbing together. It is also a safety practice that lowers the chance of branches falling, because healthy branches rarely fall.

Crown Restoration

Crown restoration is an intense trimming process for trees that have been significantly damaged (either by pests or weather). It should only be done by a certified arborist who knows where the tree is going to grow over time and roughly just how long it’s restoration is going to take.

Unlike most other tree trimming services, crown restoration happens throughout an extended period of time with conservative pruning that reshapes the tree. Your arborist must have a definitive plan to restore the tree, but also be flexible as the tree starts to grow and reshape on its own, adapting to the tree’s new growth pattern.

Vista Pruning

If you want trees to help improve curb appeal, you are most likely interested in vista pruning. The purpose of vista pruning is to help to make the tree more visually pleasing from a particular viewing point.

It consists of several tree trimming techniques including crown thinning, crown reduction and crown cleaning – any technique that makes the trees look prettier. Remember, though, that an arborist will never jeopardize the health of a tree, so the primary focus of vista pruning is still to maintain strong, healthy trees.

Espalier Pruning

Espaliered trees are heavily pruned to grow flat up against walls or a trellis. It is a unique style of trimming that will attract a lot of attention to your yard. Espalier pruning must be started when the tree is young and then continued very consistently throughout the tree’s life span.

of espalier pruning include allowing maximum sunlight to get to the trees, as well as making it easier to harvest fruit.

Professional Tree Pruning in Massachusetts

Tree pruning can be dangerous for a tree, your lawn, and, of course, for you! MA Tree Trimming highly recommends professional tree pruning over attempting DIY.

Besides the many possible dangers of tree trimming, you can do a lot of harm to a tree if you don’t trim it properly. Excessive pruning is one of the most typical errors made by homeowners trimming their own trees.

Trees in Massachusetts that get annual care from a professionals are much better off, and hiring an experienced arborist from MA Tree Trimming to prune trees on your property is a choice you won’t regret. Locate your town in our service area. We work with arborists across the entire state of Massachusetts!

How to Care for New Trees

Planting new trees on your land has many benefits. Trees offer much-needed summer shade, create privacy, filter polluted air and increase curb appeal and property value. Everyone should plant trees.

Once completely grown, most trees are easy to care for: another benefit! Trees are hardy and tend to grow despite minimal care. However, if you want to ensure your trees achieve their potential, they need more effort.

Lack of care for young trees can result in rotting, disease, under watering or pest issues.

Fortunately, tree care isn’t too difficult, but you do need a little information to do it right. Research the new trees you plant in order to know what they need. Then properly care for them and watch them bloom.

Below, we’ll list the five best practices for planting a new tree and seeing it grow. You likely know the basics, so let’s dive deeper and lay out how to perform each step.

Tree Care Tips for New Trees

These five tips will not only keep trees alive, they’ll help them grow much faster, stand up to strong winds, fight off diseases ,insects and pests and produce more leaves, buds or fruit.

Water Your Tree

New trees need more water than older ones. The trees you plant on your property are no exception.

The root of the tree and the soil surrounding it have to be kept moist, but don’t let it get too wet, as this might cause the roots to rot.

The rule of thumb is 4-10 gallons of water every week. Rain water counts, and although it’s challenging to have an exact reading, a rain gauge can get you close enough to add the rest. Your trees will need this much water every week for the first 2-3 growing seasons.

Mulch Around Your Trees

Mulch is more than an attractive lawn care material. It also helps protect new trees, especially the roots. But laying mulch incorrectly can sometimes cause rotting and decay – so much so, that the new tree will not survive.

Place mulch 3 inches away from the tree trunk and spread it around to completely cover the ground underneath the longest horizontal limb. For brand new trees, this won’t be very far, but as the tree grows, your mulch area will continue to grow as well.

Keep the mulch at least 2 to 4 inches thick in all areas around the tree. Be attentive in keeping it spread out consistently and far enough away from the tree trunk so it does not stop air flow around the tree trunk.

Fertilize Around Your Tree

Fertilizer provides several nutrients that your land’s soil may not naturally have. Most young trees will benefit from fertilizing, but you need to use the correct products and do it at the right time for fertilizer to be most beneficial.

The best time to fertilize is during early spring. Sometimes early summer also provides good conditions (comfortable temperatures and moist soil), but don’t count on it.

If you are uncertain about which fertilizer to use, consult a tree care specialist for advice. Slow-release fertilizers are often a good idea because they feed your trees over time rather than all at once.

Follow through with these tasks in the initial growing seasons after planting a new tree, and then review your watering, mulching and fertilizing needs as the tree becomes more established. As seasons go on, there will be tree care projects that become more important for your new trees.

Trim Your Tree

Tree pruning is very important – but very tricky – in the early years after planting a tree. As the tree grows, you may see a lot of small branches take off, attempting to become the tree’s trunk. You may think this means that the tree is healthy and growing well, it can actually result in a very weak tree as time goes on.

Early pruning helps to shape the tree into what it will look like when it gets much larger. As tiny limbs emerge from the lower trunk, they need to be cut off so they don’t steal water and nutrients from the upper branches.

So long as there are trees growing on your property, they need to be trimmed regularly. When the tree gets too big for you to trim them safely, you can count on MA Tree Trimming to do it for you.

Monitor Your Tree

New trees are at the highest risk for damage, disease and pest issues. But you’re never truly safe from these things. As your tree gets older, watch it carefully for signs of disease or poor nutrition, including the following:

  • Leaf color change out of season, especially leaves turning brown or yellow
  • Premature leaf drop, despite whether leaves look healthy or diseased
  • Wilting, even with adequate watering
  • Individual limbs or branches dying
  • Bark peeling

These signs likely mean a health problem. It is likely going to require professional care if your plan is to keep the tree alive. A certified arborist can usually identify the issue by just looking at the tree, although they will perform testing if deemed necessary.

If you identify the issue quick enough, you will likely be able to save the tree. Being proactive is the best way to protect your new trees.

The tips above are basic yet effective. Don’t underestimate the value of the basics! When new trees have proper care, combined with sunshine and barring any severe, damaging weather, the chances are good that the tree will survive and will look wonderful!

Of course, you might already have a very busy schedule and don’t really want to be responsible for these additional tasks. In some cases, homeowners don’t have the ability or the tools to give their new trees the appropriate care.

No matter the situation, it’s a good idea to hire a professional for the care of new trees. A professional arborist in Massachusetts can advise you about the course of care for each type of tree you plant. Arborists love sharing their knowledge and skills with people planting new trees, and they can make the difference between trees that struggle and trees thriving.

Call MA Tree Trimming now for information on routine tree maintenance in Massachusetts – including tree trimming – for new trees and older trees. An arborists will determine the best plan for your trees! Locate your city in our service area here.