Planting shrubs and trees in your outdoor landscape is more than just an investment. It’s very important for you to protect your investment throughout the year. Failing to do so will result in extra costs for maintenance of your landscape, which can easily be prevented. There are several signs which can tell you that winter wasn’t kind to your plants. However, there are a few solutions you can count on for your plants to thrive once warmer weather returns. Here are certain signs which can typically be seen in plants which have suffered damage during the colder months and some steps which can be taken to prevent the damage from happening again.
• Winter burn
When you notice your plant stems and foliage have dried out and turned brownish in colour, it’s a sign of winter burn. Evergreens are plants which show the earliest signs of winter burn, so keep an eye on them if they’re additions to your garden. The needles and leaves turn into a golden brown colour. The cold, the wind and the winter sun can make most of your shrubs and trees to appear slightly bleached with an overall yellowish colour. You can also notice something known as sunscald, which happens when the bark of a tree receives sudden exposure to the sun. The sudden change in the temperature causes the bark to darken in colour and small sunken areas to appear as well.
• Salt damage
Salt is commonly used to de-ice sidewalks and driveways. The same salt is capable of damaging your shrubs and trees by drying out water. It draws out the water needed by the plants to grow and hence, the leaves appear slightly scorched and browned. The salt from salt trucks may also cause the shrubs and trees facing the roads to appear brown and burned when exposed.
• Animal damage
Your shrubs and trees provide a gourmet meal for rodents like mice and rabbits. Food is scarce during the winter months. So, these animals start feeding off the bark, twigs and branches of your plants.
How deep root fertilization can help
This is perhaps the best and most useful way of recovering your plant life from the harsh winters. Some beneficial vitamins and fertilizers are injected deep into the soil, where the roots of the plants are located. Then a fertilizer is sprayed on the surface which allows the shrubs and trees to absorb water, oxygen and other essential nutrients they need to grow. It also encourages the roots to become stronger and loosens the soil up, giving more space for the roots to grow. The result of this is your plants have everything they require to recover and thrive. You don’t have to stress about broken branches, brown leaves or damaged bark.
Some other things that can be done
Remember not to fertilize too late in the season or over water the plants. You can reduce the fertilizer and water gradually early in autumn. This will harden the plants up for the harsh winter. Also, during the fall cleanup, gather some unwanted branches and brushes which are suitable for mulch, and spread it around the shrubs and trees you wish to protect. This ensures the plant bed remains moist and is well-protected against the cold weather.
Winter is a time when plants suffer the most damage. If you want to provide your outdoor landscape with year-long benefits, contact a professional landscape planner and modifier who can provide help and guidance.