Our trees face serious consequences from the current drought. Here are a few ways to relieve the stress from them—from an article by Lisa M. Krieger, San Jose Mercury News
- Clear grass to at least 6 inches from the trunk’s base. Some arborists clear it to the tree’s drip line.
- Cover the area with wood chips or other mulch to help maintain soil moisture, being careful not to let mulch touch the trunk.
- Watering needs depend on a tree’s species, soil, location and whether it is well established.
- If it’s younger than 5 years old, a general rule is that it needs 10 to 15 gallons of water per week during the growing season.
- Water established trees once a month, applying 10 gallons for each inch of the trunk’s diameter. The exception: established oaks, which should be watered only during the Bay Area’s normal rainy season when there’s no precipitation.
- Water trees slowly, using a soaker hose or drip system.
- Continue watering a tree until the soil beneath the canopy to slightly outside the drip line is moist 12 to 18 inches below the surface. Use a small trowel to check moisture depth.
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