Tree Care: How To Keep Your Trees Thriving This Summer

Tree Care: How To Keep Your Trees Thriving This Summer

Reading time: 5 minutes

There's a common misconception that trees are self-sufficient and don’t need to be watered because they get all the water they need on those rainy days. But when summer in Western Canada brings scorching heat, even the hardiest trees can wilt under pressure.

Proper tree care, including watering, is vital to keeping your trees standing tall and proud. Read on as we debunk some tree care myths and share comprehensive tips to keep your tree in tip-top shape this summer.

Tree with green leaves
Photo credits

Tree Care Tips for Summer

1. Pest and Disease Management

The summer heat can invite unwanted pests and diseases to your trees. Regularly inspect your trees for signs of trouble, such as wilting leaves, leaf spots, galls, or unusual growths.

Common summer pests include aphids, scale insects, and spider mites, while diseases like powdery mildew and anthracnose can cause significant damage. To control these pests, apply eco-friendly insecticidal soap or horticultural oil as needed.

For disease management, consider removing affected branches and disposing of them properly. Stay vigilant, and if you're unsure, consult experts to identify and address the issue promptly.

Green Drop using injection treatment on a tree

2. Some Fertilization Can Go a Long Way

Fertilization is vital for promoting steady growth and providing your trees with essential nutrients. To give your trees a consistent nutrient supply throughout the summer, apply a slow-release fertilizer designed explicitly for trees.

Avoid over-fertilizing, as it can lead to excessive leaf growth and water stress. Proper fertilization will help your trees stay vibrant and resilient, even in the scorching heat.

3. Watering Wisely

Watering is crucial to keep your trees thriving during the hot summer months. Aim for deep watering to encourage strong root growth and reduce drought stress.

Water early in the morning or late in the evening to minimize evaporation and give the soil ample time to absorb moisture. Apply water around the tree's drip line rather than directly at the trunk.

Proper watering is key for tree health, so we’ve discussed watering techniques in more detail in the next section.

4. Tree Staking

Young trees often require staking to provide stability in high winds and storms. Use flexible ties to secure the tree to stakes placed outside the root ball. Remove the stakes after the first year to allow the tree to sway naturally, strengthening its trunk and promoting a healthier growth pattern.

5. Mulching for Moisture Retention

Mulching is an excellent way to retain moisture and regulate soil temperature. Apply a 1–2 inch layer of organic mulch around the tree's base, extending to the drip line. Avoid piling mulch against the trunk, as it can lead to rot and attract pests.

Proper mulching helps the soil retain moisture, reduces competition from weeds, and protects the tree’s roots from extreme temperatures.

Green Drop worker watering a tree with a hose

6. Pruning (If Necessary and with Care)

We never recommend pruning in the summers, mainly because certain trees with open prune wounds are susceptible to diseases brought on by insects that thrive on these wounds. This is especially true for oak and elm trees. We must comply with the Alberta elm pruning ban between March 31 and September 30.

That being said, there are certain exceptions for other trees. You can consider pruning if:

  • The tree is a hazard and needs a bit of trimming
  • Your trees have diseased or dying branches
  • You have fruit trees; you can improve the quality of fruit production

Either way, it’s always best to get your local arborist involved in any pruning because over-pruning in the summer can interrupt food flow because you cut off certain branches and thin out the tree. This may lead to a less full tree the following year. Pruning in moderation will ensure your trees stay healthy and continue to thrive.

7. Protection from Lawn Equipment

Be careful when using lawn equipment around trees, as damage to the bark or roots can compromise the tree's health. Keep mowers and trimmers away from the tree's base, and consider installing protective barriers if necessary.

8. Proactively Inspect Your Tree’s Health

Tree care is all about being proactive with its maintenance and health. When the temperatures start to increase and spring kicks in, it’s best to have your local arborist come in and conduct a thorough tree inspection. This will help identify problem areas (if any), such as winter damage, animal damage, weak branches, etc.

Having a tree care program in place also helps tremendously to keep your tree healthy. Green Drop has three tree care packages that include:

  • RootBoost™️ - Deep Root Fertilization
  • Targeted treatments for insect and disease control
  • Comprehensive landscape assessment
  • Discount when prepaid

Choose your tree care package right here.

Proper Watering Techniques for Thriving Trees

As promised, here’s a more comprehensive look at how to quench your trees’ thirst the right way:

  • Timing Matters. Water in the early morning or late evening to minimize evaporation and ensure the tree has enough moisture to stay hydrated throughout the day. Watering during the hottest parts of the day leads to rapid evaporation, wasting water and reducing its effectiveness. Early morning watering is ideal as it allows the soil to absorb moisture before the heat kicks in.
  • Deep and Infrequent Watering. Water deeply but less frequently to encourage deep-root growth and drought resilience. Instead of quick, daily watering sessions, aim to soak the soil to a depth of 12–18 inches once or twice a week. This method ensures the tree’s roots reach deeper for water, developing a strong and stable root system. To gauge how much water your tree needs, use a soil probe or dig down to check the soil moisture level.
  • Watering Young vs. Mature Trees. Newly planted trees need consistent watering to establish strong roots. Water regularly to keep the soil evenly moist, ensuring the root ball doesn't dry out. Increase the watering frequency during hot and dry spells. Mature trees need less deep watering. Focus on watering at the drip line, where the tree's active root zone is located. This encourages the roots to grow outward and absorb moisture more effectively.
Green Drop water truck watering a tree

Tree-t Your Trees Right This Summer with Green Drop!

Proper watering, pruning, and pest management can help your trees flourish even in the hottest summers. But if you're stumped on how to keep your trees thriving, our ISA-Certified arborists are here to help.

With personalized tree assessments and comprehensive care plans, we’ll ensure your trees stay in tip-top shape.

Schedule a free assessment today and let our experts root out any issues before they take hold. Trust Green Drop to help your trees grow tall and proud this summer! Take a look at our tree care packages designed to make sure your trees beat the heat and stay healthy all year long!

Green Drop provides tree care services in Calgary, Edmonton, Red Deer, Regina, Saskatoon, and Winnipeg.

Schedule Your Free Tree Care Assessment