Landscape Tree Care And Pest Prevention
Part five in our pest prevention series
Trees are the masters of the landscape. An ugly, poorly shaped tree can make the rest of your property look ugly a, well groomed tree can cover a multitude of landscape sins. Since trees dominate the landscape, it is important to give them proper care.
Trees and pest control
A properly maintained tree will be healthy, and a healthy tree wards of pests. A badly trimmed tree will encourage pests which endanger the health of the tree, and can promote insect invasion.
Proper tree pruning
Proper pruning is essential both for the health of the tree, and for avoiding pest problems. A tree with limbs touching the home is a pathway to insects and rodents. If you lop that limb off at random, and leave torn bark, and stubs of limbs sticking out, you are encouraging pests and disease which could eventually cause the early death of the tree.
Always prune back to the callous of a latter branch, support the limb to avoid tearing bark, make more than one cut when needed See Pruning Trees for more details on the best way to prune.
Such tears and stubs allow water and insects into a tree, encourage ants, termites, and other bugs and pathogens including fungi. Once these bugs get enough of your tree, they will attempt to get inside your home.
Whatever you do, do not top a tree. There is never a reason to do so! There is always an alternative.
Compaction and smothering
Vehicles parked in a tree’s root zone will probably not compact the soil enough to kill the tree, but it may make it more difficult for the tree to stay healthy. If compaction is unavoidable, relive it by aerifying.
Avoid building up heavy layers of soil or other materials in the drip zone, and if you most build the area up, add no more than one inch per year, or provide an alternate system for supplying air and water to the root zone.
See part six in our pest prevention series: Sealing Homes For Pest Prevention