Wondering If Your Tree Was Hurt By The Recent Rain? Chances Are It Was.
Rain, rain, go away! Usually a children’s song, it has also been a plea from many DC Metro Area residents this May. With it raining 17 days in the first 3 weeks of May, we were all ready for the sun to come out and for the rain to stop interfering with our days. But what you might not have thought about is the effect the rain was having on your trees. Most people assume since water is essential to tree growth that excessive amounts of rain can’t do any harm; unfortunately, this is not true.
Excessive rains during the tree’s growing season, such as May, can cause a multitude of issues. And the longer a tree is exposed to excessive rain, the greater the possibility for nutrient, oxygen level, and fungal issues to arise.
Ways The Recent Rain May Have Hurt Your Tree:
1 ) Nutrient issues– when heavy, extended periods of rain occur, important nutrients such as nitrogen are washed out of the soil. As a result, your trees can begin to suffer from a nutrient deficiency. These deficiencies make your trees more susceptible to insects & diseases.
2) Oxygen level issues – When soils are saturated from excessive amounts of rain, crucial oxygen is prevented from reaching the root system. Extended periods of low oxygen levels can cause root dieback, with the above-ground symptoms showing up as defoliation, droopy foliage, branch die-back, and leaf chlorosis.
3) Fungal issues: Fungi are moisture-loving organisms. The extended wetness and warm temperatures have created a home sweet home breeding ground to many disease pathogens. The most common fungal diseases in our area include anthracnose, powdery mildew, apple scab, fire blight, armillaria root rot.
Most homeowners might think their trees weren’t affected because they are not showing any signs of fungal diseases this week; however, our Arborists advise keeping an eye out since most fungal diseases and compaction issues can take weeks to develop. We most likely will see the real effects this rainy period had on our trees in June and July. Why not get ahead of these issues and start preventatively treating your trees? Check out the way RTEC fixes these issues below. And remember an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!
How to Fix These Issues:
Nutrients: Feed your trees. Bio-Stimulants are a more natural version of fertilizer and act as a multi-vitamin increasing the tree’s overall health. Learn more about bio-stimulants.
Oxygen Level: If your tree is suffering from compacted soil/low oxygen levels you need soil aeration. Aeration, a technique using pressurized air, breaks up the soil and allows oxygen to re-enter the soil. Learn more about soil aeration.
Fungal Issues: Fungal issues can be combated by applications of fungicide. Your Arborist may also suggest a bio-stimulant application to stimulate the overall health of the tree after the fungal infection is suppressed.