Category: Tree Care

Maple Tree Diseases and How to Prevent Them

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maple tree diseases

Maple trees are elegant additions to any home. From a single, simple red maple to acres of sugar maples, protect your maple trees with proper prevention and pruning. If you suspect an issue with your maple trees or are looking for ways to promote healthy growth, here are some common maple tree diseases to watch out for.

Tar Spot

One of the most distinct maple diseases is tar spot. If you notice tar-like spots on the leaves of your maple tree, it could be infected with this fungal disease. These large spots damage your maple leaves and create an unpleasant look.

The best way to prevent this fungal disease from occurring or spreading is to take care of your fallen leaves. Rake your maple leaves consistently to keep the fungus contained and avoid further spread among other maple trees.

Asian Longhorned Beetle

There are many insects that can cause damage to your trees if left to their own devices. One of the worst maple tree bark diseases is actually caused by a beetle infestation. Asian long-horned beetles eat the sapwood under the bark layer of your maple tree. This damage dramatically reduces the transportation of nutrients and water throughout your tree.

It’s very difficult to remove Asian long-horned beetles, and an infestation typically causes your tree to die within two years. A professional tree service provider can assist you in identifying and preventing the spread of these pesky beetles.


While frost damage can cause your maple tree to lose foliage and experience shoot dieback, these symptoms shouldn’t appear when your tree hasn’t been exposed to a frost. Frost-like symptoms can also be signs of anthracnose. This damaging disease causes defoliation, twig death and shoot dieback.

Preventing anthracnose is difficult without professional assistance. Ensuring your soil is able to drain properly and is well watered is the best prevention strategy. If there are already signs of anthracnose on your maple tree, certain fungicides or other techniques must be used in order to protect your trees from further damage. It’s best to leave this to a professional.

Verticillium Wilt

This dangerous fungus routinely kills maple trees. Commonly known as maple wilt, verticillium wilt begins at the root system and affects the entire tree. From cankers and dieback to seemingly scorched leaves and diseased branches, this fungus can cause disastrous effects.

It’s very difficult to spot the initial signs or prevent the spread of verticillium wilt. However, professional care, routine watering and fertilizer and other treatment options can improve the health of your maple tree and prevent maple wilt from completely killing it.

Other Diseases and Infestations

For less common, but no less dangerous, diseases and infestations, you need to be on guard for a variety of signs and symptoms. Maple trees can be infested with leafhoppers, boxelder bugs, gall mites, cankerworms or aphids. Each of these insects plays a role in damaging your tree and reducing its beauty and overall health.

Other common diseases include root rot and cottony scale. Many of these infestations and diseases have similar symptoms, so a professional tree service can give you more detailed information about the exact disease and how to protect your maple trees.

Take advantage of local, qualified expertise to prevent maple tree diseases and promote healthy growth in all of your maple trees. Whether you have questions about these particular diseases or need professional assistance in preventing these diseases, request a quote today from Safari Tree.

Our professional team understands the common and uncommon issues with maple trees and other local tree species. Receive the expertise you need to keep your yard looking beautiful and your maple trees growing healthy year after year.

Fall Tree Care

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Fall Tree Care

As we begin to transition from the summer season to the fall season, even though we are still dealing with the heat, it isn’t too early to start preparing the trees and shrubs on your property for the eventual change in weather. It is important to plan ahead and consider fall tree care.

These valuable assets on your property may appear thriving and hardy, but the exposure to the hot, summer sunshine for extended periods of time can impact the health of your trees and shrubs. Without knowing, these trees and shrubs become more sensitive to infestations of both pests and fungal diseases.

Ensuring that your trees and shrubs regain their health is critical to protecting them from the cooler temperatures before the next growing season, as the cold weather can and will compromise their survival. Fall tree care is vital for the health of your trees all the way through to the next growing season.

Fall Tree Care Tips

  • Water: The most important step to take right now is to make sure your trees and shrubs are receiving enough water, so heavy watering around the base of your trees and shrubs is strongly recommended.
  • Mulch, Fertilizers: Applying new mulch, fertilizers and other preventative tree care can be very beneficial as they start slowing down their growth to prepare for the winter.
  • Planting: Fall is also the best time to plant new trees and shrubs on your property as it gives them the opportunity to establish their root system with cooler temperatures in the soil as well as adequate watering.

Proper tree and shrub care are important to protect these assets on your property, and having a comprehensive preventative care program will help in giving you that piece of mind. For expert fall tree care, contact Safari Tree for an absolutely free estimate today!

In addition to tree care Safari Tree offers a pest control service including a tick control service, mosquito control services, ant control services, mole control for lawns, a spider control service and more.

Tree Diseases in Michigan

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Tree care, tree disease and tree fungus treatment are a few of Safari Tree’s specialties. Let’s take a look at the some of the various common tree diseases in Michigan that our tree service treats here at Safari Tree.

Tree Cankers

Tree diseases in michigan

Cankers are dead areas of bark that are located on the trunk, branches and/or twigs of a tree. Cankers are caused by numerous species of fungi that infect stressed or wounded trees, killing the living bark. Infected trees are characterized by discoloration, oozing sap, and sunken areas, cankers are some of the most difficult disease problems to manage. The best canker management is preventative. Keeping trees healthy and stress-free will reduce the risk of infection considerably. If a tree does have canker, the entire infected area should be removed, sterilizing the pruning tools between cuts. Pruning should not be done during wet or humid weather to minimize the spread of disease. Avoid wounding trees when doing yard work or mowing as this leaves the tree much more vulnerable to infection.

Oak Wilt Fungus

Oak wilt is a lethal disease caused by a fungus, which invades and disables the water-conducting system in white, red and other oak tree species. Different species of oaks vary in susceptibility to the disease. Red oaks typically die within 4 to 6 weeks of initial symptom development, while white oaks may survive or take 1 to 6 months to defoliate and die. Oak wilt is most often spread via root grafts between interconnected and grafted root systems. Root graft disruption and fungicidal treatments aid in preventing the spread of oak wilt.

How does oak wilt spread? Sap feeding beetles are the most common insect vector, but bark beetles have also been reported as a vector. They feed on fungal spore mats that form between the bark and the wood of the oak and carry oak wilt spores to wounds on uninfected trees. In the northern range, overland transmission takes place throughout the spring and early summer, while in the south it can occur any time of the year. Because beetle vectors (carriers) are attracted to fresh wounds it is important not to prune oaks during the season that spore mats are present. In the north, prune only during the dormant season; in the south, pruning is recommended only during December and January. Pruning paint is only necessary for wounds occurring during the growing season in the north, however, in the south, seal all wounds regardless of the season.

Pine Needle Scale and Soft Scale Diseases

Pine needle scales

Pine needle scale is a hard or armored scale – scales are aphid-like insects that produce a hard waxy shell to protect themselves from predators and environmental conditions. Pine needle scale females resemble legless bumps and damage plants with their sucking mouthparts. The smaller male scales have wings and while in the nymph stage also feed on plants. Female scale continues to feed as they produce over a hundred eggs under their shell. The mater female dies, but the eggs survive the winter under the protection of the shell.

In the spring and summer of the following year, the eggs hatch into an immature stage called the “crawler” stage. The crawlers, also called nymphs, move out from under the shell and find a new location on which to feed. As they settle, they begin to produce their hard shell. Pine needle scales feed primarily on the needles of trees. Unlike soft scales and aphids, which feed on the circulatory system of the tree, armored scales feed on the contents of individual cells. Since they destroy cells, they can cause significant dieback of infected stem tissues and in severe infestations, even the death of trees.

Symptoms of pine needle scale may include some or all of the following: thin sparse needles, white spots on needles, white waxy scale coverings, and extensive needle and branch death.

Tree Scale

Soft scale, similar to pine needle scales, are also aphid-like creatures that feed on the sap of trees. Young scales, referred to as crawlers, feed on the foliage whereas adult scales feed directly on the branches. All soft scales feed on the sap contents of the tree, which means they are susceptible to systemic insecticides. Dormant oils and contact insecticides can also be effective, but only if they are applied to the unprotected crawler stage of the scale. Thus the timing of contact insecticide applications is critical to effective control.

Symptoms of soft scale may include some or all of the following: tip die back in branches, stunted chlorotic foliage, premature leaf drop and branch dieback, honeydew secretions on the tops of branches, and also black sooty mold growth on the honeydew.

Anthracnose Fungus

anthracnose leaf tree disease

Continuing with our common tree diseases series, one of the most common fungal diseases are anthracnose, which can infect ash, oak, maple, and sycamore trees, as well as other tree species. The fungus causes dead blotches on the leaves that disrupt photosynthesis and transpiration with can eventually lead up to spring leaf drop. As leaves mature, they become less susceptible to the pathogen. Repeat defoliation by anthracnose can directly impact the tree’s overall health and it is important to stop this disease before it begins to spread.

The life cycle of this particular fungus is noticeable to the naked eye. In the late fall and early spring months, black pimple like bumps will develop on infected leaves from the previous year. Spores are then released and blown by wind or even splashed by rain to nearby trees, causing the spread of the fungus rapidly. The primary infections produce secondary spores which affect other leaves and fruit. The secondary infections of this disease can and will continue throughout the growing season during wet periods of time.

Needle cast disease

The next more common tree disease is the Rhizosphaera Needle Cast, which is a foliage disease of spruce trees. This disease can cause significant damage to trees growing outside of their native range. Older, inner needles show symptoms first, and as the disease progresses, newer needles will begin showing symptoms as well. Infected needles first appear mottled or speckled with dull yellowish blotches, and as the disease progresses, the needles will begin to turn brown to purplish brown. The needles then drop (cast) anywhere from 3 to 15 months after the infection has occurred and also depends on the type of spruce species infected. Branches begin dying if they are defoliated in 3-4 consecutive years, though larger trees rarely die and succumb to this disease, however they may become so disfigured that they lose all of their ornamental value.

Are your trees under threat? For healthy trees, contact one of our Certified Arborists today to learn more about our preventative treatment plans.

In addition to tree care Safari Tree offers a pest control service including mosquito control services, ant control services, mole control for lawns and a spider control service.

7 Expert Summer Tips For Your Trees

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summer tree care in michigan tips

Summer is one of the hardest seasons on trees.  Extreme heat, combined with little water can put a tremendous amount of stress on your trees, making them susceptible to infestations and diseases.  Safari Tree, Southeast Michigan’s expert tree service, has compiled a list of tips for homeowners to give their tree the attention needed this summer:

  1. Check The Soil Poor soil conditions can cause a number of issues for your trees.  Check the pH balance of your soil to ensure your trees are getting the nutrients they need.  Also, soil compaction can prevent strong root growth and the trees’ ability to take in much needed water.
  2. Deep Watering Unlike lawns that need to be watered regularly, many trees prefer the soil to be deeply soaked once a week.  Depending on the size of the tree, water a foot or two away from the base of the trunk.
  3. Watch for PestsMany bugs love to shade themselves under the leaves of the trees.  Stand under your tree and look up…if you see a noticeable population, you may need to purchase an insecticide or call in an arborist.  
  4. Look for Obvious Signs Leaves are typically the first indicator if there’s an issue with the tree.  Chew marks, discoloration and leaf distortion are signs that your tree may have a disease or infestation.
  5. Mulch Smart Do not mound mulch up the tree trunk!  There are cells at the base of the trunk that take in carbon and air – much needed nutrients.  Mulch only needs to be approximately 2 inches from the ground.   
  6. Don’t Water The LeavesSome people find it tempting to “cool down” their trees on a hot day by spraying the leaves with water.  Those water droplets can act as a magnifying glass in the hot sun and actually burn the leaves.  Keep watering to the root zone!
How TO mulch a tree in Michigan

Erik Hutson, certified arborist for Safari Tree, also suggests keeping fertilization to a minimum.  “Unless the tree is in obvious need of help, there’s no reason to fertilize in the summer,” says Hutson.  “Trees require a healthy dose of nutrients after a harsh winter, and again in the fall, after a stressful summer.”

Founded in Grand Blanc and headquartered in Rochester Hills, Lush Lawn – Safari Tree has been providing Southeast Michigan with superior lawn and tree care since 2004. 

In addition to tree care Safari Tree offers a pest control service including mosquito control services, ant control services, mole control for lawns and a spider control service.

The company currently operates four branches in Southeast Michigan (Rochester Hills, Grand Blanc, Brighton and Plymouth) and employees over 90 sales and service personnel, as well state certified technicians and arborists. 

What is Black Knot Disease?

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Black Knot Disease on Tree

Black knot disease is a serious fungal disease that can hurt fruit trees by killing new growth and disfiguring the tree. Commonly affecting plum trees and cherry trees, this disease can devastate your trees and ruin your orchard. It spreads quickly and can overtake an orchard in no time. If you have fruit trees on your property, you need to be aware of the way this disease could affect your trees, what you can do if you notice signs of it, and be aware that tree disease and tree fungus treatment from a tree care expert such as Safari Tree may be necessary.

What Is Black Knot Fungus?

Black knot fungus is caused by the Apiosporina morbosa fungus. It causes knobby dark growths on the tree’s trucks or branches. While mature trees can handle the fungus, those with weak branches or the trees that are younger cannot, and the disease can lead to tree death.

Black knot fungus is also dangerous because of how quickly it can spread. During the winter, it remains dormant in the tree, so it appears that the fungus has gone away. Then in the spring, rain allows the fungus to release spores, which can spread on the wind. These spores take hold on different trees, spreading the disease throughout the orchard. This chronic problem will continue to spread year after year, so you need to deal with it decisively.

Black Knot Disease

What Are the Symptoms of Black Knot?

The most obvious symptom of black knot disease is a large gnarled black swelling, which is called a gall. However, if you can spot earlier signs before the large black gall develops, you can start treatment more easily.

At the start of the disease, the tree will develop small olive-green swellings. Over the next two to three years, these will grow and turn black. The final gall will grow to be four to six inches in size. Once the gall matures, it start producing spores which spread to other trees. Eventually, the gall will grow large enough to completely surround the branch, killing the leaves beyond the point of the gall.

How to Get Rid of Black Knot

Black knot can be a challenging disease to treat. One of the first steps to take when you notice the problem is to prune the tree. Identify and remove all the branches that have obvious black knot towards the end of the winter. Aim to prune four inches below the fungal growth, just in case the disease has spread but is not yet visible. After pruning the tree, disinfect the pruning tools so you do not inadvertently spread the disease to a healthy tree. Remember that the pruned branches can spread the disease, so dispose of them properly.

After removing the galls, apply fungicides, especially in younger trees. Fungicide is most effective if applied after the flower has budded, but before it is in full bloom. Choose a fungicide that is designed for your region for the most effectiveness.

This job is not an easy one to tackle. You must be able to identify all of the infected branches of the tree, and remove them effectively, or the tree will simply develop a new infection. The best way to deal with black knot is to hire a certified arborist who can identify the black knot fungus and treat the trees as effectively as possible.

If your cherry trees, plum trees or other fruit trees are showing signs of black knot disease, get help right away. Regular checkups from a Safari Tree arborist will help identify black knot fungus before it gets out of hand.

How Do I Know If My Tree Is Sick? Common Signs of Tree Sickness

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Trees are beautiful to look at, fun to climb and lovely to sit under when you need some shade. But most importantly, trees provide the life-giving oxygen that all life on earth needs to survive. That’s why it’s so important to monitor your trees for tree disease symptoms and contact a tree service such as Safari Tree before disease sets in. Once an infection takes hold, if not properly treated, your trees may need to be removed. Safari Tree, Michigan’s premiere tree care experts takes Michigan tree disease and tree fungus treatment issues seriously so we have compiled this guide so that you can learn the warning signs and keep your trees happy and healthy.

How to know if trees are sick in michigan

Check the Bark

The bark is like a tree’s skin and can tell you a lot about the health of your tree. As with human skin, healthy bark will look healthiest when it is soft and flexible. If your tree’s bark seems brittle, scratchy or is noticeably flaking, this means your tree is fighting for its life.

Additionally, bald spots can also signify tree bark diseases. There are many things that can make a tree sick from bacteria, fungi and bug infestations to issues with birds.

Monitor the Leaves

While it’s normal for trees to lose leaves during the fall, if you notice sudden, unexplained leaf loss the rest of the year, it might be time to call in the professionals. The leaves are one of the first signs that can clue you in to a potentially sick tree.

If it’s spring or summer and you notice that your leaves are shriveled, dry and dropping from the tree at an excessive rate, your tree will need some TLC stat. Other symptoms can include strange spots or patches of rust on the leaves. These are also signs of shrub disease symptoms and will need professional treatment.

Watch out for Wild Mushrooms

Mushrooms and other types of fungus are never good news for a tree. If you see patches of mushrooms growing on the bark or the trunk, call us at Safari Tree right away. There are fungicides that can get rid of these nasty infections but if fungus spreads, it can kill the tree.

Falling Branches

It’s normal for branches to fall every now and again. This is especially true if there has recently been a great deal of wind or a storm. However, like leaves, if you notice excessive falling branches, take a closer look. If they are dried out or rotten, there may be an insect infestation taking hold.

Sick Roots

The root network is arguably the most important part of a tree. Roots provide the tree with essential nutrients and water from the ground and also are responsible for keeping a tree erect and secure. However, if the roots of your tree get nicked by lawnmowers, get overly soggy from over-watering or display signs of wood ears or patches of mushrooms, your tree could be vulnerable to sickness. If your tree roots look sick or you aren’t quite sure if they are at risk, contact us today.

Michigan Tree Disease Control

With proper maintenance, trees can grow for decades offering shade, beauty and fun. But if you suspect your tree might be sick, contact Safari Tree for help battling the infection. We specialize in the treatment of sick trees and also provide removal services for any trees that are past the point of help. Our team also has a seasonal tree care program for tree disease prevention. This includes Ash tree disease prevention.

Sick trees can be dangerous as they are more brittle and can easily break, whether that’s the trunk or branches, and cause damage to property or any people or pets nearby. Contact us for a free estimate. We look forward to caring for your trees.

How Is Tree Fungus Treated?

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Wedgle Injection on a tree

As a homeowner in South East Michigan, you take great pride in all aspects of your property. This includes trees, which must be properly maintained and cared for to ensure they remain healthy and robust. That’s why securing effective tree care techniques such as tree disease and tree fungus treatment is so important. Unlike other threats to your trees, such as insect infestations, tree fungus may not be readily apparent to the untrained eye. Safari Tree can help you identify any possible issues and offer a reliable solution. We believe in a comprehensive approach to tree health, which is why our Michigan tree fungus services are so trusted by local clients.

Tree cankers caused by tree fungus

The first step to tree fungus control is to identify any possible issues. There’s a range of tree diseases to look out for, each of which presents with specific signs and symptoms. Being aware of these signs will help you determine the specific threat facing your tree and allow you to take the proper steps to find a reasonable solution. The following are just a few things to look out for if you’re concerned about the health of your trees this summer.

Tree Cankers

While cankers can be caused by bacterial issues, they often result from tree fungus. The problem usually begins with an injury to the tree. Once the injury occurs spores make their way inside, which results in obvious defects. While it depends on the type of tree canker, look for things like ridged calluses which can be rather large in size.

These callouses will continue to grow and grow, until splits in the bark form. These areas will be discolored while also giving off a foul smell, as well as cause leaves to shrivel and die. If left unchecked, the tree’s vascular system will eventually become infected.

Professional tree fungus services are crucial in this case. Pruning can alleviate the issue, but it must be done carefully to prevent the fungus from spreading. You should also take steps to prevent injuries to your tree, such as applying a safe insect repellant.

Tree Rust Spot

Much like its impact on metal, tree “rust” grows on trees gradually. This fungal infection usually targets the leaves, and while there are innumerable types of rust that attack different trees, there are a few common signs to look for if you suspect an issue. For instance, tree rust spot often causes bumps on leaves.

Leaves may also become deformed, and after so long they will wither and die without proper treatment. The first sign of rust is discoloration on leaves, which start as white sports before changing to colors like red, brown, and orange. Identifying the correct type of fungus is key to providing treatment. From here, diseased leaves will be removed, and fungicide will be applied based on the type of infection affecting your tree.


Some types of Michigan tree fungus thrive on the area’s cool, moist climate. This is the case with anthracnose, which can cause serious damage to your trees if the proper treatment methods aren’t taken. Spring is the most likely time for anthracnose since the temperature and rainy conditions make for an ideal breeding ground.

Leaf damage will also be prevalent, including brown colored lesions that continue to become darker in color until leaves finally shed. Fungus on tree branches may also be evident, and fruit-bearing trees will show signs on the fruit itself. Additionally, anthracnose can easily spread from tree to tree, which illustrates the importance of getting it under control quickly.

Safari Tree is here to help you identify, treat, and prevent common tree fungi and other diseases. Our tree health care programs take a holistic approach to trees and plants, including the application of insecticide, fungal sprays, and fertilizer. We also offer a pest control service, including rodents, mosquitoes, fleas, and ants. Call (855) 317-5965 today to schedule tree service at your home.

Fogging and Other Forms of Residential Mosquito Control

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Mosquito spray treatment in Michigan

Mosquitos have been spoiling outdoor activities for generations. The welts left behind from their bites are often itchy and painful and scratching them hard enough to tear the skin can lead to infection. However, mosquitos are more than just a perennial nuisance; they can be dangerous too. They can carry viruses that cause potentially life-threatening diseases.

Many homeowners are now taking steps to protect their properties with residential mosquito control services in the form of fogging and other methods from Safari Tree whose expert pest control service is trained to handle mosquitos and other outdoor pests.

Mosquito Control Service

What Is Mosquito Fogging?

Mosquito fogging is a way to kill large numbers of adult mosquitos all at the same time. It involves dispersing a synthetic pesticide into the area via a spray of very small droplets. The technique of dispersing these droplets into the air is called fogging and is typically accomplished by means of special machinery. When adult mosquitos come in contact with droplets of the pesticide that linger in the air after the fogging is complete, they are killed instantly, meaning they no longer pose a threat.

Is Mosquito Fogging Harmful to Humans or Wildlife?

The concentration of pesticides used in mosquito fogging is so small that it only poses a danger to mosquitos and insects of similar size. Neither animals, plants, or human beings are harmed by it. The chemicals involved are also odorless, so you are unlikely to detect any evidence of the fogging in the air after it takes place.

In fact, you’re in greater danger from mosquitos themselves than fogging. Mosquitos carry viruses that can cause a number of diseases. If an infected mosquito bites you, you have the potential to contract the diseases, some of which can be deadly. Mosquito-borne diseases in North America include the following:

  • West Nile virus has been present in the United States since 1999. Infections can be mild or severe. Severe infections can cause neurological symptoms including partial paralysis, seizures, tremors, or coma.
  • St. Louis encephalitis is a rare but serious mosquito-borne infection found throughout the United States that causes swelling and inflammation of the brain.
  • Zika virus is found mostly in tropical and subtropical climates. It can cause neurological disorders in adults, as well as birth defects if a woman becomes infected while pregnant.

Are There Limits to the Effectiveness of Mosquito Fogging?

Mosquito fogging will remain effective at killing adult mosquitos for approximately three weeks at a time. After 21 days or so, it will be necessary to have another treatment to continue unbroken protection from adult mosquitos on your property.

While mosquito fogging is proven effective at killing adult mosquitos, it does not destroy mosquito eggs or larva. Fortunately, there are other mosquito control services like larvicidal surface water treatment available to prevent larval mosquitos from becoming adults. You can also take the preventative step of draining any unnecessary standing water from your property.

Can You Perform Mosquito Fogging Yourself?

There are products available for do-it-yourself mosquito fogging. However, remember that the process is only safe when you follow the instructions on the label to the letter. It is better to leave mosquito fogging in the hands of the professionals, as an amateur mistake has the potential to cause harm to you or to the environment.

Are There Alternatives to Pesticides?

While the chemicals used in traditional mosquito fogging are safe and effective, some homeowners are uncomfortable with the idea of using poisons in their yards that could have unforeseen effects on their families or the natural environment. Unlike some mosquito control companies, we understand this concern, and that’s why we offer organic mosquito control solutions that are just as effective, yet use natural materials that won’t harm the environment or cause unpleasant side effects.

What Are You Waiting For?

Mosquito season will soon be here again. Contact Safari Tree today to discuss which mosquito control services will work best to protect you, your family, and your property.

When To Prune Trees and Shrubs

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Pruning a tree branch

As a homeowner, you work hard to keep your property in top condition. For outdoor spaces, that means paying special attention to exterior structures and landscaping. Your maintenance routine should include a tree and shrub care program that promotes healthy growth and aesthetically pleasing results. Safari Tree’s expert tree service can give you some expert tips to help you achieve these goals.

Start With the Basics

Nourishment and support are key factors for tree and shrubbery upkeep. Before you think about pruning, you need to make sure that you give your plants essential nutrients and protect them against pest damage. To start them off right and boost their growth, we recommend tree and shrub services with a multi-season approach:

  • Spring: Apply dormant oil and a deep root feeding.
  • Summer: Perform multiple rounds of insecticide and fungal spray applications.
  • Fall: Do a deep root feeding and apply anti-desiccant spray.

In early spring, an initial application of dormant oil inhibits pest infestations and staves off damage to trees and shrubs. Dormant oils are formulated to kill harmful insects and prevent their eggs from hatching. Deep root feedings in the spring and fall consist of fertilizers, delivering nutrients directly to the roots to help plants thrive all year. Safari Tree’s pest control service continues throughout the summer with insecticide and fungal sprays, designed to keep destructive organisms away. Anti-desiccant spray help trees and shrubs retain moisture during deep freezes, protecting them from drying out and suffering from winter burn.

Pruning 101: Understanding the Techniques

Besides nutrition and pest control, pruning is a vital step in caring for your shrubs and trees. It can help improve their health, shape their growth patterns and even encourage flower and fruit production. Many homeowners don’t feel confident in their pruning abilities. You needn’t be afraid to perform this simple task, but the techniques are important.

Pruning typically involves making two types of cuts: heading cuts to shorten single branches and thinning cuts to remove branches. Heading cuts should be made at a 45-degree angle and placed just after a healthy bud. A thinning cut should occur as closely as possible to the location where a branch intersects with its primary limb.

Your first goal is to remove dead, diseased, dying and damaged branches to keep each plant in good condition. You should also prune suckers or odd branches that sprout near the base or roots. Several other types are prime pruning candidates:

  • Limbs that sag or seem to compete with a tree’s central leader
  • Branches that grow too close to or rub against others
  • Branches forming acute angles with the trunk
  • Watersprouts, or fast-growing vertical branches originating from the trunk or older branches

Develop Your Pruning Regimen

Knowing when to prune is also critical to achieving best results. Not only that, each tree and shrub category has its own particular pruning needs. Summer-flowering species benefit most from pruning in late winter or early spring, while they’re still dormant. New growth on random-branching conifers such as junipers and yews can also be pruned during this time. In early summer, prune whorl-branching conifers along and spring-flowering plants after their blossoms have declined. Trees with heavy springtime sap flow should be pruned in midsummer.

When is it a bad idea to prune? Some homeowners make the mistaking of doing do during fall or early winter. However, this practice can injure plants and impede new growth. During this season, only branches that are dead, dying, diseased or crossing each other should be removed.

Tree and Shrub Care Services in Southeast Michigan

With 15 years of knowledge and expertise, the professionals at Safari Tree help maintain healthy trees and shrubs all year round. For a free quote, complete our online form or call us toll-free at (844) 500-8733.