How To Care for Trees

Tree care examination of foliage for signs of disease and infestation

Prevent your trees from becoming severe risks to your property and wellbeing. By knowing how to care for your trees, you can keep them thriving for decades. gathered the following information to assist you in caring for your trees from the time you plant them until their maturity and beyond.

Tree Care – Planting

Placing “the right tree in the right place” is your first act of caring for your tree and will determine much of how the tree grows and whether you will have years of joy and shade or multiple problems and expenses. Consider the following information when selecting the species and location of your tree:

Tree Species – When selecting the species of the tree you’d like to plant, the following will help you choose the right species:

  • Will the species tolerate your region’s hardiness zone?
  • Is the species known for invasive roots?
  • Is the tree an overstory or understory?
  • Does the tree need full or partial sun?
  • Is the tree tolerant to regional pests and diseases?
  • Is the tree deciduous or evergreen?

To determine your USDA Hardiness Zone, visit

Tree Location – As a tree grows, it can’t get up and move if its location becomes inconvenient. When selecting a location to plant your tree, use the following to guide your decision:

  • Are there power lines running over the location?
  • Are there utility lines running under the location?
  • Are there sidewalks, driveways, or structures nearby that could be damaged by invasive roots?
  • Does the location receive full or partial sun?
  • Is the location well-drained, or does water pool?

Tree location near building steps and sidewalk

Read more about selecting a tree species and a location to plant it at

Tree Care – Watering

Lack of water can cause your tree to wilt, suffer hydraulic failure, and die. To keep your tree in outstanding health, there must be a regular watering schedule that meets the needs of the tree. The following will help you determine how often to water your tree:

  • Water your tree three times per week
  • One of the three should be a deep watering (this will encourage the roots to grow deep)
  • Water the entire root plate (the root plate grows outward and is typically the same size as the tree’s crown)
  • During times of drought or intense heat, give your tree two deep waterings per week
  • When rainfall is plentiful, reduce the frequency of waterings

The soil around your tree must be well-drained. If water remains pooled after rainfall or waterings, your soil must be adjusted to allow proper draining. Reduce the frequency of waterings until the soil is improved.

Tip: The continuous application of organic mulch can help your soil structure maintain proper drainage properties.

Tree Care – Mulching

When organic mulch is applied correctly around your tree, it can improve soil quality and regulate both soil moisture and temperature. Consider the following when mulching your tree:

  • Apply a layer of organic mulch 3 to 6 inches deep over the entire root plate
  • Keep mulch pulled back 2 to 3 inches from the tree trunk and root flare (this will help prevent problems with decay, disease, and nesting wildlife)
  • Fluff the mulch when it compresses and add more when necessary
  • Remove and replace mulch when it becomes riddled with mold

Tree care includes the seasonal mulching of trees to protect and nurture roots

Organic mulch can be from a compost pile, straw, or wood chips.

Tree Care – Fertilizing

At times, the soil around your tree may need to have its chemical composition and pH level adjusted.

For trees that grow in acidic soil, the pH level should be 6.5 or less, for those preferring a base soil, the level should be 7.5 or above. Soil with a pH of 7.0 (6.5 – 7.5) is considered neutral.

Soil pH levels can be adjusted using phosphoric acid or sulfur to make them more acidic. While limestone, organic mulch, or wood ash will reduce the soil’s acidity. Many brands of fertilizer contain one or a combination of the above to adjust soil pH levels.

Frequently, the missing or deficient element in soil is nitrogen, and as such, the vast majority of fertilizers contain it.

Read more about fertilizing trees at

Tip: Tree fertilization should be done in fall (after the growing season) or late winter (before the beginning of the next growing season)

Tree Care – Pruning

Small tree branches can be pruned whenever they present problems at any time of the year. Large branches – branches comprising over 5-10% of the tree’s crown volume – should only be pruned in winter when the tree is dormant. Trees should never be pruned in autumn since the air is filled with diseases and decay fungi.

There are many reasons to cut tree limbs; they might be diseased or dead, they could be rubbing against other limbs, or they are competing with other branches and have to be removed.

Raising or thinning the canopy is another reason for limb removal. This is done to open the canopy to more sunlight or provide additional vertical clearance.

Tree pruning for shaping or removing problematic diseased or infested branches

Read more about pruning and cutting trees at

Annual Tree Inspections

Your tree(s) should be inspected by a professional tree service annually to detect any problems with abnormal growth, infestations, or disease.

This type of inspection is also known as a tree hazard assessment. It is used by arborists to determine whether or not any actions should be taken to improve the health and safety of the tree.

Tree Removal

There are times when the best course of action is to remove your tree. The following may require your tree to be removed to protect your landscape and surrounding trees:

  • Boring insect infestations
  • Infectious tree diseases
  • Severe storm damage
  • Severe root damage or rot
  • Leaning tree
  • Root damage to surrounding structures

If you suspect that your tree should be removed, contact a professional tree service to evaluate the situation and recommend the best course of action. Sometimes, the best way to care for your trees is to eliminate the ones that could compromise the health and vigor of the others.

Tree care for diseased and infested trees may require emergency removal

Caring for Trees

In this article, you discovered many ways to care for your trees from the time you plant them until their maturity.

By promoting the health of your trees, you enable them to grow strong and resist attacks by disease and insects.

Neglecting the care of your trees will lead to abnormal growth and potential death by disease and infestation.


Fast Tree Removal Services Atlanta

3379 Peachtree Road #555aAtlantaGA 30326
(404) 220-9965
Fast Tree Removal Services Dunwoody

2111 Peachford CirDunwoodyGA 30338
(404) 220-9963

The original post How To Care for Trees appeared first on

Invasive Tree Species

surface roots of an invasive Invasive tree species

Avoid planting a tree that could damage your home’s foundation or disrupt your region’s ecosystem. By knowing which tree species to avoid planting, you can contribute to a diverse and healthy ecosystem. gathered the following information about the dangers of planting invasive trees and which species to avoid.

What Are Invasive Trees

An invasive tree species is a species that can thrive, reproduce and spread, unaided, and at alarming speeds.

Stand of invasive quaking aspen tree species

The definition may also apply to the root system of a tree species. Invasive tree roots spread far and are capable of causing structural damages to sidewalks, driveways, and foundations as they grow beneath them. Also considered invasive are those roots that invade and plug up water supply and sewage lines.

Invasive tree species with roots breaking through sidewalk and road

List of Invasive Tree Species

When selecting a tree for your yard or landscape, you can help preserve your native ecosystem by avoiding these following tree species (Unless native to or established in your region):

• African tuliptree (Spathodea campanulata)
• Alexandrian laurel (Calophyllum inophyllum)
• Amur chokecherry (Prunus maackii)
• Amur cork tree (Phellodendron amurense)
• Amur maple (Acer ginnala)
• Antilles Calophyllum (Calophyllum antillanum)
• Apple (Malus)
• Arabian coffee (Coffea arabica)
• Arizona cypress (Cupressus arizonica Greene)
• Asian nakedwood (Colubrina Asiatica)
• Athel tamarisk (Tamarix aphylla)
• Australian almond (Terminalia muelleri)
• Australian redcedar (Toona Ciliata Roemer)
• Australian tea tree (Leptospermum laevigatum)
• Australian-pine (Casuarina equisetifolia)
• Austrian pine (Pinus nigra Arnold)
• Avocado (Persea Americana)
• Balsam poplar (Populus balsamifera)
• Bee-bee tree (Tetradium daniellii)
• Bigtooth aspen (Populus grandidentata)
• Birch-leaf pear (Pyrus betulifolia Bunge)
• Black acacia (Acacia melanoxylon)
• Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia)
• Black mangrove (Lumnitzera racemosa)
• Black peppermint (Eucalyptus salicifolia)
• Black wattle (Acacia mearnsii)
• Blackthorn (Prunus spinosa)
• Bottlebrush (Callistemon viminalis)
• Boxelder (Acer negundo)
• Bradford pear (Pyrus calleryana)
• Bristly locust (Robinia hispida)
• Cabbage tree (Cordyline australis)
• California privet (Ligustrum ovalifolium)
• Camphor tree (Cinnamomum camphora)
• Carrotwood (Cupaniopsis anacardioides)
• Castor aralia (Kalopanax septemlobus)
• Castor bean (Ricinus communis)
• Ceara rubber tree (Manihot glaziovii)
• Cherry laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)
• Cherry plum (Prunus cerasifera)
• Chilean jessamine (Cestrum parqui)
• Chinaberry (Melia azedarach)
• Chinese Banyan (Ficus microcarpa)
• Chinese catalpa (Catalpa ovata)
• Chinese crab apple (Malus hupehensis)
• Chinese elm (Ulmus parvifolia)
• Chinese fir (Cunninghamia lanceolata)
• Chinese holly (Ilex cornuta)
• Chinese privet (Ligustrum sinense)
• Chinese tallow tree (Triadica sebifera)
• Common filbert (Corylus avellana)
• Common hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna)
• Common pear (Pyrus communis)
• Cooper’s Cyathea (Cyathea cooperi)
• Coulter pine (Pinus coulteri)
• Council tree (Ficus altissima)
• Crabapple (Malus)
• Crack willow (Salix fragilis)
• Crapemyrtle (Lagerstroemia indica)
• Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera)
• Deodar cedar (Cedrus deodara)
• Devil tree (Alstonia macrophylla)
• Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii)
• Earleaf acacia (Acacia auriculiformis)
• Eastern cottonwood (Populus deltoides)
• Eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana)
• Eastern white pine (Pinus strobus)
• Fig (Ficus carica)
• English elm (Ulmus procera)
• English holly (Ilex aquifolium)
• English oak (Quercus robur)
• European aspen (Populus tremula)
• European birch (Betula pendula)
• Firetree (Morella faya)
• Flamegold (Koelreuteria elegans)
• Forest redgum (Eucalyptus tereticornis)
• Fountain palm (Livistona Chinensis)
• French tamarisk (Tamarix gallica)
• Glossy buckthorn (Frangula Alnus)
• Glossy privet (Ligustrum lucidum)
• Glossy shower (Senna surattensis)
• Golden rain tree (Koelreuteria paniculata)
• Governor’s plum (Flacourtia indica)
• Gray dogwood (Cornus racemosa)
• Gray poplar (Populus x canescens)
• Guava (Psidium guajava)
• Hedge maple (Acer campestre)
• Hedionda macho (Senna septemtrionalis)
• Horse chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum)
• Incense-cedar (Calocedrus decurrens)
• Indian rosewood (Dalbergia sissoo)
• Indian rubber plant (Ficus elastica)
• Italian stone pine (Pinus pinea)
• Japanese angelica (Aralia elata)
• Japanese cedar (Cryptomeria japonica)
• Japanese cork tree (Phellodendron japonicum)
• Japanese holly (Ilex crenata)
• Japanese maple (Acer palmatum)
• Japanese privet (Ligustrum japonicum)
• Japanese yew (Taxus cuspidata)
• Java plum (Syzygium cumini)
• Jeffrey pine (Pinus jeffreyi)
• Karaka nut (Corynocarpus laevigatus)
• Large gray willow (Salix cinerea)
• Laurel willow (Salix pentandra)
• Lavalle cork tree (Phellodendron lavallei)
• Lemon (Citrus x Limon)
• Lime (Citrus x Aurantiifolia)
• Lombardy poplar (Populus nigra)
• Mango (Mangifera indica)
• Maritime pine (Pinus pinaster)
• Mayten (Maytenus boaria)
• Melaleuca (Melaleuca quinquenervia)
• Mimosa (Albizia julibrissin)
• Monterey cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa)
• Monterey pine (Pinus radiata)
• Mountain ebony (Bauhinia variegata)
• Northern catalpa (Catalpa speciosa)
• Norway maple (Acer platanoides)
• Norway spruce (Picea abies)
• Octopus tree (Schefflera actinophylla)
• Ohio buckeye (Aesculus glabra)
• Oleander (Nerium oleander)
• Olive (Olea europaea)
• Orange (Citrus x Sinensis)
• Osage-orange (Maclura pomifera)
• Papaya (Carica papaya)
• Paper-mulberry (Broussonetia papyrifera)
• Plum (Prunus domestica)
• Plume albizia (Paraserianthes lophantha)
• Plum leaf crabapple (Malus prunifolia)
• Poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima)
• Pomegranate (Punica granatum)
• Ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa)
• Portugal laurel (Prunus lusitanica)
• Prickly-ash (Zanthoxylum americanum)
• Princess tree (Paulownia tomentosa)
• Quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides)
• Queen palm (Syagrus romanzoffiana)
• Red bead tree (Adenanthera pavonina)
• Redbox (Eucalyptus polyanthemos)
• Redosier dogwood (Cornus sericea)
• River redgum (Eucalyptus camaldulensis)
• Rose glory bower (Clerodendrum bungei)
• Rose myrtle (Rhodomyrtus tomentosa)
• Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)
• Saltcedar (Tamarix ramosissima)
• Sawtooth oak (Quercus acutissima)
• Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris)
• Sea hibiscus (Talipariti tiliaceum)
• Siberian elm (Ulmus pumila)
• Silk oak (Grevillea robusta)
• Smooth sumac (Rhus glabra)
• Sour cherry (Prunus cerasus)
• Sour orange (Citrus x Aurantium)
• Southern catalpa (Catalpa bignonioides)
• Stickbush (Clerodendrum chinense)
• Strawberry guava (Psidium cattleianum)
• Sugar gum (Eucalyptus cladocalyx)
• Surinam cherry (Eugenia uniflora)
• Swamp mahogany (Eucalyptus robusta)
• Sweet cherry (Prunus avium)
• Sycamore maple (Acer pseudoplatanus)
• Tall lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta)
• Tree-of-heaven (Ailanthus altissima)
• Tropical almond (Terminalia catappa)
• Trumpet tree (Cecropia palmata)
• Tung oil tree (Vernicia fordii)
• Vinegar tree (Lophostemon confertus)
• Wayfaring tree (Viburnum lantana)
• Weeping willow (Salix babylonica)
• White lead tree (Leucaena leucocephala)
• White mulberry (Morus alba)
• White poplar (Populus alba)
• White willow (Salix alba)
• Willow (Salix spp.)
• Woman’s tongue (Albizia lebbeck)

Invasive willow tree species

Note: Native tree species have not evolved alongside these trees and have difficulty competing with them.

To learn how to select the proper planting location and tree species, visit

Invasive Trees

In this article, you discovered information about invasive tree species and the dangers they pose to native ecosystems.

When you avoid planting invasive tree species, you are protecting the native ecosystem of your region.

By planting non-native, invasive tree species, you are recklessly endangering the ecological integrity and biological diversity of your region.


Fast Tree Removal Services Atlanta

3379 Peachtree Road #555aAtlantaGA 30326
(404) 220-9965
Fast Tree Removal Services Dunwoody

2111 Peachford CirDunwoodyGA 30338
(404) 220-9963

The original post Invasive Tree Species appeared first on

Why Are My Trees Dying?

Dying trees from disease infestation and climate conditions

Your dead or dying trees could become severe hazards capable of causing catastrophic damage to your property. Knowing why your trees are getting sick and dying will help you take action to either save them or remove them. gathered the following information to help you uncover the many reasons your trees may appear to be dying or already dead and what to do with them.

What Is Making My Trees Sick?

Your trees may be under stress or dying from a variety of conditions. For some of the following, the situation can be reversed, for others, tree removal may be necessary for the protection of the surrounding trees and landscape:

Drought – Trees are capable of resisting disease-causing organisms and insect infestations when they are sufficiently hydrated. During times of drought, trees, shrubs, and plants use up water stored in the soil.

If this water is not replenished, trees will begin to display the following signs:

• Wilting
• Unseasonal leaf drop
• Insect infestation
• Fungal growth

It is essential to note that the above signs of illness or infestation typically appear after years of stress being applied to a tree’s health.

Unseasonable Heat – With global average temperatures on the rise and in many regions, longer summer seasons, heat may cause trees to lose the ability to evaporate enough water to cool their leaves.

When trees cannot meet their cooling needs, the result is leaf damage and additional stress to the tree’s health. This condition often causes early leaf drop in deciduous species and mortality in conifers.

Dying trees from rising temperatures and unseasonable heat

Note: In small doses over long periods, trees are extremely capable of adapting to evolving conditions. However, at the rate temperatures are on the rise globally, trees are unable to keep up. Those trees found on the cusp of their hardiness zone are usually the first to develop symptoms of “overheating”.

Boring Insects – These insects have mastered their attack on trees to the point that by the time you recognize signs of infestation, the insects have likely moved on to a new host. Boring insects like beetles tend to successfully attack trees already stressed by heat, drought, and other factors. Signs of a boring insect infestation include:

• Entry/Exit holes in the trunk, branches, or stems
• Foliage wilting or loss on specific branches or stems
• Branch or stem death on an otherwise healthy-looking tree
• Visual identification of the insect

Due to the destructive nature of boring insects, an arborist must be hired to inspect the tree, perform a hazard assessment, and evaluate the risk to the surrounding environment.

Read more about beetle damage and treatment at

Disease – When trees are infected by a disease, they can take years to show symptoms, and by then, it may be too late to save the tree. This depends on the health of the tree when it was successfully attacked, the tree’s capacity to compartmentalize diseased tissue, and how the tree was infected.

Pathogens that attack trees through their roots are fast-acting and can cause hydraulic failure and death in a fraction of the time others may take.

Diseases that frequently attack trees include:

• Anthracnose
• Armillaria root rot
• Dothistroma needle blight
• Oak wilt
• Phytophthora diseases
• Blight diseases
• Cytospora (Cankers)

Some pathogens like the ambrosia fungi are carried from tree to tree by boring insects. If successfully attacked, the tree now hosts a boring insect infestation and the disease it brought with it. Coupled with an already weakened state, such trees are likely to show symptoms, decline, and die fairly quickly.

Diseased dying trees with visible symptoms

Note: Tree roots weakened/stunted by drought or root rot (poorly drained soil) are most susceptible to successful pathogen attacks, such as Armillaria root rot.

Poor Tree Care – In some instances, a tree’s health can be weakened by the actions meant to boost its health. Consider the following:

• Poor pruning practices
• Using unsterilized equipment
• Over-fertilizing
• Water-logging the soil
• Herbicide application (to kill weeds) too close to the root plate or on the tree
• Volcano mulching

Read more about tree pruning, cutting, and removal at

When a tree suddenly dies, it is likely due to multiple factors (drought, infestation, disease, unseasonable heat, etc.) causing hydraulic failure within the tree. Visit to discover what other signs to watch for when a tree’s health is declining.

Trees Eventually Die

For as much as we love and care for our trees, they are not immortal. It is normal for trees to grow old and die. Many fruit trees have a lifespan limited to decades, while some species may persist for hundreds or thousands of years. You can give your tree its best shot at a long life by:

• Planting an appropriate species for the region
• Planting it well within its hardiness zone
• Planting it in the right location*
• Providing the correct balance of nutrients
• Providing sufficient water (especially in times of drought)
• Using proper organic mulching techniques
• Using proper pruning methods with sterilized equipment

* The importance of planting a tree in the proper location cannot be overstated. The roots need space to grow and develop unobstructed. The tree’s canopy should be free from obstruction (especially from any power lines above).

Dying trees from poor care techniques

If and when the time comes to have your tree removed, call a professional tree service to have it safely brought down, especially if it is infested or diseased. This will help you save any neighboring trees, shrubs, and plants from being infected or infested by whatever killed your tree.

My Trees Are Dying

In this article, you discovered several reasons that can lead to the death of your tree(s), and what to do with them.

By recognizing the signs of disease and infestation, and taking action, you can potentially save your tree. At the very least, you can make informed decisions on what needs to be done.

When you ignore the signs of an ailing tree, you place your property, vehicles, and even your well-being at grave risk if the tree topples.


Fast Tree Removal Services Atlanta

3379 Peachtree Road #555aAtlantaGA 30326
(404) 220-9965
Fast Tree Removal Services Dunwoody

2111 Peachford CirDunwoodyGA 30338
(404) 220-9963

The original post Why Are My Trees Dying? appeared first on

Will Cutting Off Dead Branches Help My Tree?

Tree pruning cutting off dead branches

Are you concerned about the meaning and impact of dead branches on your tree? By knowing how and when to cut dead branches off of your tree, you can help it remain healthy and vibrant. gathered the following tips and information about cutting dead branches off of your tree and the impact it can have on your tree’s health.

Does Cutting Off Dead Branches Help a Tree?

Yes, cutting off or pruning dead branches helps a tree in a multitude of ways. The act of pruning dead branches and growth also adds to the safety of the tree and its surroundings.

When Is The Right Time To Prune Branches

The right time to prune branches depends on which ones you are pruning and for what reason. For dead, dying, or broken branches, observe the following:

• There is no wrong time. Dead or dying branches pose a considerable health risk to the tree and should be removed when detected.
• When a branch dies, there is no sap running through it, thus minimizing the risk of oozing sap after its removal.

Tip: When removing an entire branch, alive or dead, it should be pruned all the way back to the branch collar (the bulging bark where the branch meets the trunk). The cut should be made flat and smooth without causing damage to the branch collar, which will eventually move in over the wound and seal it.

Dead branch removed to help the tree

For live branches, the rules change:

• To remove or prune live and healthy branches, it is recommended to do so at the end of the growing season, during a tree’s dormancy cycle, or before budding at the beginning of the next growing season.
• This pruning may be done to shape the tree, thin the crown, encourage new spring growth, and many other reasons.
• Pruning these branches during the growing season can invite a host of insects and disease to the tree, potentially leading to compromised health and the eventual death of the tree.

Tip: Uncover further information about the right time(s) to prune your trees by reading

Tree Safety Concerns

As a branch dies, all of the twigs attached to it and the branch itself will become a hazard to whatever is below it. Dead limbs will:

• Rot from the smaller diameter parts first
• As the larger diameter parts rot, they begin to fall
• Injure other limbs as they fall
• Become a substantial threat to whatever is below, as some may weigh several hundred pounds

When these limbs are located over driveways, garages, sheds, and homes, they are capable of causing catastrophic damages and should be removed promptly.

Tip: Once per month, take the time to examine your tree canopy. Be on the lookout for dying, dead, or rotting branches. Once identified, look below it to see what may be in the path of the limb if/when it falls.

Tree Disease and Insect Infestation Concerns

Over several millennia, trees have developed magnificent defensive systems against insect infestations and disease. However, a dead branch is a defenseless open invitation to insects and diseases.

While the healthy parts of the tree can effectively repel these intruders, all it takes is a single successful attack to compromise the health of the rest of the tree.

Tree pruning to reduce the risk of insect infestation and disease

Tip: If you detect carpenter ants, beetles, mushrooms, or any strange growth on a dying or dead branch, contact a professional tree service. They can evaluate the situation and recommend a course of action to remedy the situation.

Why Does My Tree Have Dead Branches?

As a tree grows, there are many reasons that a particular branch may die while the rest of the tree flourishes. The following are some of the reasons a tree may have dead branches:

1. The branch may not get enough sunlight. This may trigger the tree to compartmentalize and eventually shed the branch.
2. There may be an insect infestation in that branch which has compromised the flow of water and nutrients (hydraulic failure).
3. Bark damage on the trunk may also cause hydraulic failure and the death of the branch.
4. Rope and wire used to hang swings, bird feeders, clotheslines, etc. may damage the branch bark enough to girdle the branch, causing hydraulic failure.
5. Severe weather events may cause a branch to crack. This damage may not be apparent until the branch begins to die.
6. Many diseases may cause individual branches, entire sections, or the whole tree to die. Many of these diseases enter the tree through the root system, while others can infect damaged bark or poorly pruned branches.

Tip: When a branch, two inches in diameter or greater, dies on an otherwise healthy tree, call a professional tree service. They can fully evaluate the tree and recommend a course of action (if required).

Help Your Tree By Removing Dead Branches

In this article, you discovered why dead branches should be removed from your tree, tips to help you do it right, and the impact pruning or cutting branches can have on your tree’s health.

By taking action when dead branches are identified, you minimize the many risks they pose to the tree and its surroundings.

When you allow dying or dead branches to remain in a tree, you subsequently expose the tree to infestation and disease while creating a hazard for people, objects, and structures below.

Sources: Pruning FAQs.pdf

Fast Tree Removal Services Atlanta

3379 Peachtree Road #555aAtlantaGA 30326
(404) 220-9965
Fast Tree Removal Services Dunwoody

2111 Peachford CirDunwoodyGA 30338
(404) 220-9963

The original post Will Cutting Off Dead Branches Help My Tree? appeared first on

Planting, Growing, and Caring for Hardy Giant Hibiscus (Rose of Sharon)

Hardy giant hibiscus flowering with purple bloom

You can plant, grow, and care for hardy giant hibiscus with ease. This fast-growing species is easy to plant and grow as a privacy screen, large shrub, or small tree. gathered the following information on the hardy giant hibiscus species, planting, growing, and care tips, and its susceptibility to insects and diseases.

Hardy Giant Hibiscus Planting and Maintenance

This shrub could easily be considered one of the easiest to plant and maintain. The species is tolerant of a variety of soils and pH levels. When planting a giant hibiscus, use the following as a guide:

• Plant during early spring or fall
• Species can be planted in full sun or partial shade garden spots, groupings, or inline as hedges/screens
• The species can handle areas with constant or strong wind
• Plant in well-drained sandy, loam, or clay soil
• The hole should be as deep as the root ball and three times as wide
• Add compost and mulch immediately after planting
• Water regularly, increasing the number of waterings during periods of drought

The following will help you keep your specimen growing healthy:

• Add compost and mulch each spring
• Prune only in late winter or early spring (before new growth emerges)
• Cut back old, weak, or dead branches (encourages new growth and larger flowers)
• Continue a regular watering schedule with increased intervals when rainfall is below one-inch per week.

Hardy giant hibiscus rose of Sharon with an orange bloom

Hardy Giant Hibiscus Species Information

Tree Name – Rose of Sharon (aka Giant Hibiscus or Shrub Althea)
Scientific Name/Species – Hibiscus syriacus
Family – Malvaceae
Genus – Hibiscus
Nickname(s) – Korean rose (South Korea), Rose of Sharon (North America), Syrian Ketmia, Shrub Althea, and Rose Mallow (in the UK).
National Flower – South Korea.
Hibiscus in History – This species is mentioned in the Bible’s Song of Solomon (2:1-2)

Lifespan – Can live up to 50 years or more when planted in optimal conditions.
Type – Deciduous.
Hardiness Zone(s) – from zone 5b to zone 9a
Soil Requirements – Prefers well-drained, slightly acidic to acidic, moist, rich, and fertile soil with full sun exposure.
Planting Spacing – 2 to 3ft apart to create a hedge.
Watering Requirements – Regular when young or planted. Minimal after that.

Hardy giant hibiscus growing as privacy screen with white blooms

Height – 8 to 12ft on average
DBH – Grows multiple trunks unless pruned to create a single-trunked specimen tree.
Crown Span – 6 to 10ft or more at maturity.
Root Spread – Located just below the soil and may spread far beyond the tree’s canopy.
Uses in Landscaping – Rose of Sharon can be planted as a tall hedge/screen, pruned to be a single-trunked specimen tree, or planted as a garden border.
Winter/Fall Colors – Yellow before leaf-drop in the fall.
Flowers – Mature, healthy specimens can bloom continuously from late spring through early fall. Its five-petaled bell-shaped flowers (up to three inches in diameter) in white, red, purple, violet, mauve, or blue, or in dual colors with a different colored throat, depending on the cultivar. Extending from the base of the flower’s five petals is a pistil at the center, with the stamen around it.

If you’re looking for other colorful plants, check out these blooming shrubs –

Hardy Giant Hibiscus Pest and Disease Problems

The Hibiscus syriacus species have problems with very few pests or diseases, they are vigorous and highly resistant when planted in optimal conditions. The pests that can pose a problem are:

• Japanese Beetles
• Spider Mites
• Aphids
• Whiteflies

Some of the diseases that may attack the species include:

• Powdery Mildew
• Cankers
• Blight
• Gray Mold
• Leaf Spots

These pests and diseases can be treated with commercially available sprays and dusts. However, the following will help prevent contamination and spreading of pathogens:

• Planting disease- and pest-resistant species
• Avoiding overhead watering
• Allowing sufficient air circulation around and through the plant
• Deadheading spent flowers (removing them)
• Removing dead, infested, or diseased plant material

Read more about disease prevention for trees and shrubs at

Note: Upon the detection or suspicion of any beetle infestation, it is highly recommended to call a professional tree service to evaluate the situation and recommend a swift course of action.

Hardy giant hibiscus small tree with pink flowers

Hardy Giant Hibiscus

In this article, you discovered information about the hardy giant hibiscus (rose of Sharon) species, how to plant and care for it, and the insects and diseases that adversely affect it.

By correctly planting and caring for your giant Hibiscus plants, you are providing the species with what it needs to flourish for decades.

By ignoring or overlooking signs of infestation or disease, you may allow insects and disease to weaken the health of your Rose of Sharon, and eventually kill them.


Fast Tree Removal Services Atlanta

3379 Peachtree Road #555aAtlantaGA 30326
(404) 220-9965
Fast Tree Removal Services Dunwoody

2111 Peachford CirDunwoodyGA 30338
(404) 220-9963

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How To Care for Your Live Christmas Tree

Live cut Christmas trees ready for purchase and transportation

You can prevent your cut Christmas tree from dying prematurely. By taking a few simple steps, you can make it last weeks longer than expected. With some easy care, a cut tree can stay fresh and beautiful while lasting well into the new year. gathered the best care tips to keep your live Christmas tree from drying out, looking ugly, and becoming a fire hazard.

Buying A Healthy Christmas Tree

Caring for a live Christmas tree starts with the selection of a healthy tree. If you choose to buy a tree from a roadside lot, a pop-up lot, or a garden store, the tree has likely traveled a great distance and been exposed to drying wind and sun throughout its journey.

To get the freshest tree possible, look up the nearest Christmas tree farm or “Cut your own” tree farm. In either case, the following tips will help you select the ideal Christmas tree:

• Select from trees in shady areas. Cut trees exposed to the sun will have already lost significant moisture.
• Look for a robust, full, and green tree with minimal brown needles.
• Feel the branches. The needles should feel pliable and the branches flexible.
• Inspect the tree branches and needles for insects and boring insect holes in the trunk.
• Lift the tree and drop it on its trunk. Minimal needles should fall from the tree.
• Have the vendor mechanically shake the tree to get rid of dead or dried needles.
• Have the vendor cut one inch off the bottom of the trunk and wrap it (if you have the tools at home to do this safely, wait until you get home).

Tip: When transporting your tree, it should be wrapped and protected as much as possible from the wind and sun. If you are going to tie it to the top of a vehicle, the trunk should be facing forward to avoid stressing the branches and needles.

Live cut Christmas tree protection and transportation

Watering Your Christmas Tree

The most significant help you can give your tree is making sure it has water to “drink.” Display your tree in a reservoir type stand, this is the most effective way of maintaining its freshness and minimizing needle loss. The following will help you keep your tree adequately watered throughout the holiday season:

• The trunk should be cut straight across for maximum water absorption.
• The stand should fit your tree. Don’t whittle the sides or remove the bark to make it fit, as this removes the xylem and phloem needed to absorb water.
• The stand should be filled with 1 quart of water per inch of trunk diameter and maintained at this level with the base of the trunk fully submerged.
• Check the water level daily to ensure that it does not fall below the base of the tree.
• Use plain, room-temperature tap water.

If you choose not to set the tree up in the house immediately, you can store it in a cool, dark place, like your garage. Place the base of the tree in water to keep it fresh.

Note: When a cut tree doesn’t drink water, it is likely due to dried resin (sap) where the trunk was cut. In most cases, this is resolved by making another cut, one inch above the original cut, and getting the tree into water immediately after making the cut.

Choosing Your Christmas Tree Location

By safeguarding your Christmas tree from heat sources, you can significantly slow the tree’s drying process. Some common heat sources to avoid include:

• Fireplaces
• Space Heaters
• Heat Vents
• Direct Sunlight
• Ceiling or Wall-Mounted Light Fixtures

Tip: By lowering the average room temperature by a few degrees, you can slow down the drying process. The tree, in turn, will consume less water.

Decorating Your Christmas Tree

When you decorate your tree, avoid piling on the decorations. The following will guide you through the decorating process for a safer and more stable tree.

Live cut Christmas tree decoration and and protection from heat sources

Christmas Tree Lighting – Use lights that produce minimal heat. Miniature lights and led lights will reduce the drying of the tree significantly.

Before putting anything electrical on the tree, inspect all of the wiring. If you find loose connections or frayed wires that are not easily repaired, discard, and replace them.

Do not allow any wiring, lights, or electronic decorations near the base of the tree. Water and electricity can be a deadly combination.

Avoid overloading electrical circuits and outlets. If your tree lights are not on a timer, be sure to turn them off when leaving your home or going to bed.

Tip: A popular method of Christmas tree lighting includes wrapping one strand of lights deep in the tree (close to the trunk) and a second strand weaving from the middle to the extremities of the tree. Led lights make this lighting method possible without accelerating the drying process.

Christmas Tree Decorations – Use lightweight decorations that hook or fasten to branches easily. As a general rule, if an ornament causes a branch to sag or bend over, it is too heavy for that branch.

As your tree ages and dries, its branches may become brittle and unable to support the weight of heavy ornaments.

Tip: Larger or heavier ornaments should be fastened to the lower branches of the tree. Those branches are sturdier and can handle a heavier load. If the ornament causes those branches to bend, repurpose the ornament or put it away till next year.

Taking Down Your Christmas Tree

When the holidays are over, and you decide to take your tree down, the question becomes; What do I do with it? The following are recycling and disposal ideas for your consideration:

• Most municipalities across the country offer Christmas tree pickup services or recycling programs that begin after Christmas and run through mid to late January. Check your city’s or disposal service’s website for pickup times and further instructions.

• Add the tree to your compost pile. You may need to cut it into small segments.

• Cut off the branches and lay them flat in garden beds as mulch. By mid to late spring, the needles will have fallen off, and the twigs can be added to your compost pile.

• Submerge the tree in a pond (if you have access and permission to do so). The slowly decomposing tree will provide years of added structure to the pond and become a feeding refuge for fish.

• Turn the tree into a bird feeder. Place the tree in the garden or corner of your landscape and decorate it with strung popcorn and/or peanut butter and birdseed covered pinecones. Local birds will use the tree for refuge while migrating birds may use it for a resting location.

Tip: If your tree dries out and becomes brittle at any time, carefully remove all of the decorations and lighting, and remove it from your home. Once your tree has dried out, it becomes an extreme fire hazard.

Live cut Christmas tree dried out and time to remove from home

Live Christmas Tree Care

In this article, you discovered care tips to prolong your cut Christmas tree’s freshness, how to keep it beautifully decorated, and prevent it from becoming a fire hazard.

By taking simple measures to keep your live Christmas tree fresh, you can maximize your investment and enjoy the beauty of your tree well into the new year.

Your inaction could lead to your tree drying out, becoming a fire hazard, and causing a deadly house fire.


Fast Tree Removal Services Atlanta

3379 Peachtree Road #555aAtlantaGA 30326
(404) 220-9965
Fast Tree Removal Services Dunwoody

2111 Peachford CirDunwoodyGA 30338
(404) 220-9963

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Why Are My Tree’s Leaves Turning Black?

Leaves turning black from tree disease attack

Don’t let your tree die when its leaves start turning black. Knowing what causes leaves to turn black and drop can help you spring into action, saving your tree and protecting your landscape. gathered the information why, and steps to take when your tree’s leaves start turning black and falling off your tree.

Why Do Tree Leaves Turn Black?

There are many reasons your tree’s leaves can turn black and fall off the tree. The following are some of the more probable causes:

Hot Weather and Drought – During times of drought, trees are more susceptible to being damaged by radical changes in temperature.

Sudden rises in temperature can leach the moisture out of your trees and cause its leaves to wither, brown, and blacken.

Tree leaves wilting and browning from drought conditions

While it isn’t feasible to control the weather, you can help your trees survive radical temperature fluctuations by doing the following:

• Increase the frequency of deep watering
• Decrease the amount of fertilizer applied
• Mulch your trees

During times of drought coupled with high temperatures, your tree’s internal processes speed up. Over-fertilizing may cause your trees to consume more nutrients than they can process, causing fertilizer burn and hastening their death.

Learn more about how to fertilize trees by reading

Boring Insect Infestations – When trees are stressed by hot weather, disease, or poor care practices, they become highly susceptible to successful insect attacks. Namely, beetle attacks.

Beetle infestations often result in leaf wilt, severe defoliation, and the blackening of the leaves. When a tree or stand of trees falls victim to a beetle infestation, treatment must begin immediately to slow or halt an infestation of epidemic proportions.

Some of the signs of a successful beetle infestation include:

• Unseasonal leaf color change
• Premature leaf drop
• Crown wilting
• Blackening of the foliage
• Entry holes
• Sawdust found on limbs and trunk

Tree leaves turning black from boring insect infestations

Infested trees are challenging to treat without killing the tree itself, and should be left to a tree professional. However, unaffected trees in the vicinity should be treated with insecticides to deter beetle attacks.

Ash trees are highly vulnerable to the deadly emerald ash borer. However, when their foliage blackens, it is more likely from an anthracnose infection than the borer.

NOTE: It is common practice to remove and destroy heavily beetle-infested trees to protect a wooded area or stand of healthy trees. In some instances, uninfected diseased trees that have become susceptible to beetle infestations may also be removed to prevent the spread of the beetle.

The ambrosia beetle is another boring insect that affects many tree species throughout North America. Learn more about the damage it causes and how to treat an infestation by reading

Anthracnose Tree Disease – This disease is often referred to as leaf spot or leaf blight. It may be caused by several different fungi. The following are some of the common symptoms indicating that your tree is infected:

• Irregular dead spots on leaves
• Formation of cankers on twigs, branches, and the trunk
• Wilting and blackening of affected foliage
• Premature leaf drop
• Bud death (resembling frost damage)

Tree leaves turning black from disease

Treatment for anthracnose includes the systematic application of fungicides in late winter and early spring, and the extensive pruning of affected areas of the tree.

Diseases like anthracnose are easily transmitted from one tree to another, usually by splashing water, overhead watering, and rainwater. Another common form of transmission is through the gardening and pruning tools used for your landscaping. Read about disease prevention tips at

NOTE: Any time more than 25% of a tree’s crown must be pruned, call in a professional tree service to evaluate the health of the tree and potential alternatives to pruning.

Anthracnose is rarely lethal to mature trees. Still, repeated annual infections can cause the decline of the tree’s health, leading to infestations, disease, and the eventual death of the tree.

For more information on identifying and managing anthracnose, visit

Tree Health and Disease Prevention

There are insecticides, fertilizers, and fungicides that can be applied throughout the year to protect your trees. However, the most effective measure to take in preventing your trees from withering in the heat, succumbing to boring insects, or contracting lethal diseases is to promote their health relentlessly.

The following are measures you can take to promote the healthy growth of your trees:

• Conduct annual soil tests to determine nutrient deficiencies and pH adjustments
• Adjust your watering schedule to keep the soil moist but well-drained
• Maintain organic mulch over the root plate throughout the year
• Correctly prune your trees to encourage spring growth
• Have your trees and landscape inspected annually by a professional tree service to detect any potential issues.

Your vigilance in keeping your trees healthy is perhaps their greatest ally in reaching maturity and living their lives pest and disease-free.

When Tree Leaves Turn Black

In this article, you discovered why tree leaves can turn black, and the steps you can take to help your tree recover and prevent future occurrences.

When problems arise, and they will, your immediate response is fundamental to the preservation of a robust landscape filled with healthy trees.

Your inaction or indifference will result in the decline of your tree’s health, its eventual death, and the potential to fall on your property or cause severe injuries.


Fast Tree Removal Services Atlanta

3379 Peachtree Road #555aAtlantaGA 30326
(404) 220-9965
Fast Tree Removal Services Dunwoody

2111 Peachford CirDunwoodyGA 30338
(404) 220-9963

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