Winter Pruning

Why to Prune Your Trees in the Winter

 

One question people are always asking me is;  “when is the best time to prune a tree?” or “ is it ok to prune the tree now?”    Although many people like to wait until the summer months to have their trees pruned,  studies have shown that late winter and early spring are actually a better time to prune.    Beginning in the fall and continuing into winter, trees shift to a dormant state. The trees growth  (including wound closure) slows significantly and does not begin again until the following spring. Research has shown that optimum wound closure is achieved by pruning  during the late winter and early spring, right before the flush growth of spring. Using this strategy, the wound left by pruning is able to begin closing as soon as the weather warms and is given the maximum amount of time to heal.    

Other reasons for winter pruning include disease control and storm preparation.   Warm weather brings with it destructive insects and fungal infections, problems which may be aggravated by pruning at the wrong time.  A certified arborist will be able to identify these issues and take the appropriate steps before they become a problem. Be proactive by pruning your tree ahead of time  before costly and unsightly damage occurs. Your investment in trees will pay dividends for years to come!

4 Great Winter Trees For Your Central OH Landscape

Winter Tree Choices

Winter doesn’t mean your Central OH landscape has to look boring.    There are many trees that will liven up your landscape and make an otherwise some interest to an otherwise boring time of year.

River Birch

River Birch
River birch has become a staple of landscapes around central ohio and for good reason.  The rapid growth and salmon colored papery bark stands out in an otherwise bare winter landscape.  River birch is a medium sized tree which can grow up to 50 ft tall and 40 ft wide given the right conditions.   One common mistake homeowners make is planting the tree too close to the house. It’s true a river birch will not grow as large as some trees, and can be planted closer than say, a red oak, but it is still wise to give it some space.

Red Twig Dogwood

Red Twig Dogwood
Although not really a tree,  red twig dogwood makes a great winter plant.  The unusual red colored bark can be very eye catching.  Red twig dogwood is a relatively pest free plant that will do well in central Ohio.  Yearly maintenance includes cutting back old stems to the base which allows the plant to grow new brightly colored stems.
Evergreen
Evergreen
Evergreens are always a solid choice for year-round interest. One of my favorites is the hemlock. The soft evergreen needles and graceful form are a welcome addition to most landscapes.  There are some major pests to be aware of when it comes to hemlock. These include: elongate hemlock scale and hemlock wooly adelgid.  Take a close look at the needles, including the underside.  Although these pests can be pretty devastating, they can be controlled with insecticides.  Evergreens can also make a great windbreak to shield your home from bitter cold winds.   Arborvitae,  hemlock,  spruce, and pine trees can all serve as effective barriers whether for privacy or protection.  However, be sure to choose your planting site carefully.  Although evergreens will provide great protection from the winter winds, they will also block the sunlight that would otherwise warm your house.

Paperbark Maple

Paperbark Maple
This small, slow growing tree has bark that peels off in sheets revealing  new cinnamon colored bark underneath. It makes a great specimen tree and will do well in areas where space is limited. The tree needs acidic soil and will not tolerate drought conditions so make sure you choose your planting site carefully.

 

Benefits of Winter Pruning

Why to Prune Your Trees in the Winter?

One question people are always asking me is;  “ is winter pruning a good idea?” or  “when is the best time to prune a tree?”   Although many people like to wait until the summer months to have their trees pruned,  studies have shown that late winter and early spring are actually a better time to prune.   Beginning in the fall and continuing into winter, trees shift to a dormant state. The trees growth  (including wound closure) slows significantly and does not begin again until the following spring.   Optimum wound closure is achieved by pruning  during the late winter and early spring, right before the flush growth of spring.  The wound left by pruning is able to begin closing as soon as the weather warms and is given the maximum amount of time to heal.    

More Reasons!

Other reasons for winter pruning include disease control and storm preparation.   Insects and fungal infections begin as the weather warms and are problems which may be aggravated by pruning at the wrong time.  A certified arborist will be able to identify these issues and take the appropriate steps before they become a problem.  Be proactive by pruning your tree ahead of time  before costly and unsightly damage occurs.    Don’t forget about your trees this winter.  Winter pruning has proven benefits and your investment in trees will pay dividends for years to come!

 

How Do I Get my Trees Ready for Winter?

Fall and Winter Preparation

Greetings from Joseph Tree Service!  Fall is here and for many of us here in Ohio it means a chance to relax and slip back into our old routines of school and work.  Trees have a routine as well and understanding these routines is critical to their care.   The most noticeable change that occurs is the obvious change in leaf color,  but many other unseen changes are also occurring.  As the days become shorter,  the trees begin to conserve their resources by shutting down the leaves or  “food making factories”.    The change in color occurs because  the leaf loses its green colored chlorophyll and exposes the  red,  brown, and yellow pigments.   So what does this mean for tree care?  Is the tree stressed?  How does this process affect tree care activities?  

Fall and Winter Biology

Fall is a great time to focus on certain types of tree care activities including planting, risk reduction,  and leaf cleanup.   It is ideal for tree planting because the tree is less likely to suffer from drought stress.  As the tree begins to shut down  it’s leaves and begin winter dormancy it also shuts down transpiration.  Transpiration is the process in which a tree carries and releases water.  It is a critical tool in the food making process but it is also the primary way trees lose water and suffer from drought stress.  Fall tree planting means the tree has already begun the dormancy process and is naturally protecting itself from drought stress.  

Fall Pruning, Maintenance, and Risk Reduction

Besides being a great time to plant new trees,  Fall is also a time to think about preparing your trees for winter.   With the onset of winter,  snow and ice may cause branches to break and trees to split.   There are several ways to  protect yourself and others from storm damage.   Cabling reduces the risk of failure by joining two trunks together with a steel or synthetic cable.  Trees with multiple trunks pose a higher chance of splitting and may be a good candidate for cabling.  

In addition to cabling and removing deadwood,  certain limbs may need to be reduced.  Reducing long or overextended limbs  will make them safer by removing weight from the end of the limb.

Finally,  take care of your trees health by following a few simple tips.  Remove fallen leaves before the springtime.  Certain fungal diseases can overwinter on old leaves and emerge again the next spring.  Removing leaves before springtime will remove the fungal spores and reduce the amount of fungal infection.  Also,  give your trees a good watering and fertilize if necessary before the winter sets in.  This will give your tree the resources it needs to make it through winter and will give it a strong start the following spring.

 

 

worker’s comp info

I wanted to write a quick post about worker’s comp.  As a homeowner, it is very important that you see or check the Ohio BWC website to ensure the company that you plan to hire has workers compensation.  If you do not confirm that the policy is active you are assuming the risk of an injured worker on your property.  I have attached a link to Ohio BWC website,  https://www.ohiobwc.com/provider/services/mcolookup/nlbwc/default.asp.  All you have to do is type in the business name, Joseph Tree Service LLC, and press enter.  The result will state some information about the company and its coverage status.

Estimates

Estimating is a very challenging aspect of our business.  We try hard to calculate the time and skill needed to complete the work you require.  Using our experience, knowledge of tree work, and our business needs, we come up with an estimate.  Usually we are very competitive, but not always.  We want to work for you. If there is a discrepancy between our estimate and others you have received, please contact us and we will make every attempt to match other estimates.  This can not always be done because of certain equipment needs to complete the job and some business’s do not have proper coverage and insurance.  In these situations we most likely will not be able to match.  But if you like our business and would like us to complete your work and the estimate is the issue, please contact us to see if we can make an adjustment.  The worst thing that could happen is we cannot!  The best thing is we can, and both parties are happy!!!

Insurance Coverage

When dealing with tree companies it is advised that the customer request to see documentation of worker’s compensation status and liability coverage.  The purpose of the liability coverage is to cover your property against accidental damages from tree work being completed.  If the tree company does not have coverage then the next option is your homeowners insurance.  You, the customer, would have to contact your agent to find out if they would cover any damage to your property caused by the tree company.  I would be cautious of accepting anyone’s verbal statement of coverage.