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Gardening Answers Knowledgebase

Search Results for ' Trees--Care and maintenance'

PAL Questions: 3 - Garden Tools: 3 - Recommended Websites: 5

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Keywords: Pruning trees, Trees--Care and maintenance

PAL Question:

What is the definition of topping a tree?

View Answer:

The Morton Arboretum Tree-Care Handbook calls topping, “indiscriminately sawing off large branches.” (1994)

According to the Washington State Department of Ecology's Vegetation Management: A Guide for Puget Sound Bluff Property Owners (May 1993, p.23), the practice of topping usually refers to cutting the upper portion of the main leader (trunk) in conifers and to the removal of all branches at a particular height in deciduous trees. Topping is not advised.

Plant Amnesty has loads of information about topping - including why it should not be done - at the following link: 5 Reasons Not to Top.

Season All Season
Date 2008-01-17
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Keywords: Picea, Trees in cities, Trees--Care and maintenance

PAL Question:

We just moved into a new house that has a beautiful 20-foot-tall Colorado blue spruce planted too close to the house. Can it be topped and shaped so it could be left in that spot? If we wanted to remove it and plant it somewhere else could we do that? Or will it just die anyway? What to do?

View Answer:

I would not recommend topping the tree. Since this tree can reach mature heights of 30 to 60 feet or more, it may not be the right tree for the site. Here is a page about Colorado blue spruce (Picea pungens) from University of Illinois Extension's Selecting Trees For Your Home.

Here is information from a local organization, Plant Amnesty, on why topping trees is not a good solution to your landscaping problem.

This organization has an "Adopt-a-Plant" service, if you think you would like to give the tree away. There are also referral services available from Plant Amnesty if you need the tree removed or moved to another location. You could also contact a certified arborist through the International Society for Arboriculture

I would suggest looking at resources like Great Plant Picks, which lists trees and shrubs which will do well in our area, and includes information on their growth habits and ultimate size at maturity.

Season All Season
Date 2008-01-31
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Keywords: Soil compaction, Trees--Care and maintenance, Pseudotsuga menziesii

PAL Question:

We have some Douglas Fir trees along a ravine. There is some construction nearby, and one of the trees is looking like it has been affected. It's losing lower branches and has much less new growth than its neighbors that are farther away from the construction. Is there anything we can do to save it?

View Answer:

It certainly could be compaction, though it is not possible to diagnose from a distance. However, symptoms of soil compaction damage include drooping branches, wilted or scorched foliage, and conifers dropping inner needles. This came from the Minnesota DNR's web site, which also discusses treatment. Here is an excerpt:

"Compaction can be partially alleviated by drilling a series of two inch diameter holes to a depth of 12 to 18 inches. Begin three feet from the trunk and continue drilling holes at two foot intervals in concentric rings around the tree and continue to at least the dripline. Each hole may be refilled with sand, peat moss or mulch. Don't recap the hole with a sod plug. There are other alternatives, such as soil injections of air or pressurized water, available from some professional tree care services."

WSU extension explains that careful watering and fertilizing can help damaged trees, though it is best to help them before damage is noticed. This, and more is found in their site "Construction Damage to Trees".

Another good resource is the University of Minnesota extension's "Protecting Trees from Construction Damage: A Homeowner's Guide." Much like the WSU resource, it discusses how to care for damaged trees and when to remove them, but in more detail.

Finally it would be a good idea to consult the Plant Amnesty referral service at 206-783-9813, or search for an arborist at the PNW International Society for Arboriculture site under "Hire an Arborist."

Season All Season
Date 2008-06-11
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Keywords: Trees--Care and maintenance, Arboriculture

Garden Tool: The International Society of Arboriculture maintains a page with 18 tree care brochures for the public. Learn why you should pay for the services of a certified arborist, how to plant a tree the right way, and how to identify tree hazards. Included on the page is a link to search for certified arborist by zip code so you can find out who the professionals are in your region.
www.treesaregood.com/

Season: All Season
Date: 2006-02-28
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Keywords: Trees--Diseases and pests, Trees--Care and maintenance, Trees, Tree identification

Garden Tool:

Silvics of North America Online by United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service, 1990.

Property owners with woodlots and tree lovers alike will find the Silvics of North America an informative and authoritative reference source on trees. Two hundred, mostly North American native trees are described including native habitat, associated trees and shrubs, propagation details, growth rate, and information on the major pests that may damage the tree. Many entries have information on the root development, which can be helpful in learning if a chosen tree will tolerate construction, or be appropriate for planting over water utilities.

Season: All Season
Date: 2007-07-12
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Keywords: Trees--Care and maintenance, Arboriculture

Garden Tool:

Trees are Good, a page maintained by the International Society of Arboriculture, has tree care brochures for the public. Learn why you should pay for the services of a certified arborist, how to plant a tree the right way, and how to identify tree hazards. Included on the page is a link to search for certified arborist by zip code so you can find out who the professionals are in your region.

Season: All Season
Date: 2007-07-12
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June 24 2013 12:55:25