Protecting Your Trees and Shrubs Throughout Winter

Tree climber on a crane platform in a basket with a railing. Cut of an old dry tree with a chainsaw. He has a helmet and a red winter jacketWe’re in the middle of a pretty harsh winter, but it’s never too late to learn about some techniques that will help preserve your landscape during the snowy season. As New Englanders, we’re no strangers to witnessing the damaging effects of winter on our greenery. However, it’s important to recognize you’re not helpless in defending your trees and shrubs against the destructive elements of mother nature. Let’s take a look at some simple steps to protecting your trees and shrubs throughout winter.

Pruning Trees and Shrubs Before Winter Storms

While pruning your trees and shrubs should be done regularly to promote healthy growth, doing so before a winter storm is vital to prevent severe damage. You want to be on the lookout for large branches that seem susceptible to increased stress as they bear more weight from ice and snow. Encourage your branches to angle upward rather than horizontally, as they’ll be able to handle a heavier load that way, and tree limbs with a larger mass should be removed.

Wrap Vulnerable Trees and Shrubs

While this may seem extreme to some homeowners, wrapping works wonders when protecting your trees and shrubs from heavy snowfall. The three most common wraps include:

  • Polypropylene Fabric: This wrap and gradually degrades, preventing girdling of the tree.
  • Paper: This material has asphalt-based adhesive in between layers. This wrap deteriorates much faster than polypropylene fabric, so mid-winter replacement may be required.
  • Burlap: This is the cheapest of wraps and can be quite messy, but it offers adequate protection.

Beyond protecting trees and shrubs from the harsh elements, it prevents gaping holes in the bark resulting from lack of sunlight. It moderates the temperature of the bark, preventing the dysregulation of heat caused by limbs and trunks being buried in snow.

Coat Trees and Shrubs in Anti-Desiccant Sprays

High winds or intense sunshine warming an evergreen can cause transpiration – which is when moisture is drained from leaves or needles. While plants can simply gather more moisture from the ground during the other months, during winter, the ground is frozen, making it nearly impossible to suck moisture from the dirt. Anti-desiccant sprays work like chapstick to assist in retaining moisture during the colder winter months.

Protecting your trees and shrubs throughout winter can save you a lot in landscape repairs down the line. While it takes some elbow grease, it’s worth it to preserve your treasured greenery. However, if this seems like too big of a task to tackle on your own, Dolan Landscaping can assist in this endeavor. We have decades of experience maintaining landscapes and clearing snow and ice. If you require our reliable services, contact us today.