watering trees

Watering Trees


This Fall, temperatures have been warmer than usual, the rain sparse and your trees and shrubs are suffering. They are thirsty and still need watering. Providing the right amount of water is an important factor to the survival of trees.

How often and how much? Frequency depends on soil drainage. Soils that drain quickly will require more frequent watering than those that drain slowly. The best way to know how often and how much to water is to check the soil moisture at six inches below the surface. Water when dry.

First 3 years after planting: If the soil is dry, provide about 1-1/2 gallons of water per diameter inch of the trunk.

All other years: Because soil type and weather conditions influence the demand for water, irrigation schedules and amounts vary.

Where? Water the area within the dripline. For large trees, focus watering on the area within six feet of the trunk and at the dripline.

When? Start checking soil moisture and watering when necessary in early spring, and continue until the soil freezes. The soil should be allowed to briefly dry out between watering.

Caution: Directly watering the base of a tree will cause root rot. Tree roots need oxygen. Soil saturated with water for more than 24 hours can prevent roots from getting oxygen. Therefore, watering too much is as dangerous as watering too little.
watering trees