Summer is the primary growing season for fruit trees across the Denver metro area. Buds and flowers have come and gone and the trees are starting to show the early signs of fresh fruit hanging from the limbs. This adds a unique beauty to your property, but caring for your fruit trees
, especially during the heat of the summer can be a bit of a challenge. As long as you know what you’re doing and work with your local tree service, you’ll be able to keep them in great shape so you can enjoy your fruit trees and everything they bring to your home. Here are a few key tips to make caring for them simple.
Inspect Them Regularly
Fruit trees are especially vulnerable to pests and damage. After all, critters love the sweet fruit they put out. This means you’ll need to stay on top of inspections every week. Get in the habit of checking your trees once a week. Look for signs of damage to the bark. Check the leaves for mold and blight. Inspect ripening fruit for pests or other damage that could make it inedible and make an appointment as soon as you see damage. The sooner your tree service can address the issues, the easier it will be for your trees to rebound and recover during the growing season.
Mulch Around the Roots
Mulch is one of the best ways to protect the roots of your fruit trees from heat, erosion, and animal damage. If you haven’t already, spread a fresh layer of mulch around the base of the tree. It should cover all visible roots and extend past the trunk by at least a few feet. Once in place, you’ll be able to water your trees without worrying about the heat evaporating the moisture to quickly or rain washing away the protective layer of soil covering the sensitive roots. The mulch should last for the full season. However, if mulch gets dispersed throughout the yard as your kids and pets play around the trees, you may need to spread more.
Summer can be incredibly dry and that means your fruit trees are going to need a little extra help staying hydrated. That said, you’re going to need to be smart about how you water your trees. Simply watering around the base and waiting until the soil is wet isn’t going to be enough. You need to make sure the water is reaching the roots. The amount of water your trees need will vary depending on the type of soil you have in your yard. If they’re planted in sand, you’ll need to water them every two weeks. If you have predominantly clay soil in your yard, you’ll want to water every two to three weeks depending on the weather. Clay soils are better at retaining moisture and can go longer between watering sessions.
Keep the Limbs Pruned
Believe it or not, pruning your trees can actually encourage more productive growth and can help the trees produce more fruit during the growing season. Take the time to get your trees inspected during and after the growing season. If your tree service notices any dead or dying branches, they’ll be able to remove them so the tree can better use the nutrients and water at its disposal. This may make the tree’s canopy look thinner, but it won’t hurt the health of the rest of the limbs.
Harvest Fruit Often
No matter what type of fruit trees you have, you know that the fruit can cause the limbs to sag. Though it’s best to let the fruit ripen on the tree, don’t leave it for too long. During peak season, check your trees often and harvest the fruit that’s starting to put strain on the branches. If you have more than you know what to do with, offer it to friends and family or freeze it for use in baked goods in the winter. By thinning out the fruit on the branches, you’ll keep your trees in better shape which will help them produce more fruit for years to come.
It’s normal for trees to need regular fertilizations to help them grow, especially when they’re young and less established in the soil. However that doesn’t mean you should fertilize every month like clockwork. Instead, only fertilize as needed. If you’re not sure how often your trees need a little extra TLC, consult with your tree service or landscaping company. Fertilizing too frequently can disrupt the soil’s beneficial nutrient composition. This can, in turn, hurt the tree and scorch the roots. Once the roots get damaged, you’ll find it much harder to bring your tree back to life and may see a dramatic decrease in fruit production for several years afterward.
Avoid Heavy Use of Pesticides
Insects are never something you want to deal with in and around your fruit trees. However, they are a part of life and you’ll never be able to completely avoid them. There are ways to reduce the prevalence of insects around your yard and pesticides are certainly an option. If you choose to use this chemical-heavy treatment, do so sparingly. Using too much can hurt your trees and the fruit more than the insects themselves. Further, you’ll put your health and that of your family’s at risk if you use to too frequently. Instead, look for eco-friendly pest control methods that will protect your trees without spreading toxic chemicals throughout your yard.
Keep Your Trees Looking Great for Seasons to Come
Fruit trees add value to your property and make your landscaping unique from other yards in your neighborhood. Just make sure you’re taking care of them properly and you’ll be able to enjoy their fruit and their beauty for decades to come.
If you’re worried about the condition of your trees or just want an experienced professional to take care of the pruning and trimming for you, don’t wait. Contact us to schedule an estimate today.