Preparing Young Trees for Winter
Young trees need a little extra protection during the chilly winter months – the trunk is actually the most susceptible to problems. “Sunscald” is when the trunk is actually burned by the sun and can put the tree in danger of developing frost cracks which can harm the tree. No worries! Applying tree wrap is a quick, easy and inexpensive method to protect your tree investment this winter.
Installing Tree Wrap
- First, pick up a tree wrap product at the Garden Center. Begin by wrapping the base of the trunk and working your way upward, overlapping the wrap as you go. This allows the wrap to shed water away from the trunk and prevent water from running down the inside of the tree wrap.
- Continue to wrap tightly until you reach the first horizontal branch. Cut the wrap and secure with twine at the top. Avoid using nylon twine or wire.
- When spring arrives and warm temperatures return, carefully remove the tree wrap. Don’t forget! Leaving it on during the warmer months can provide a habitat for harmful insects.
Protection from Animals
Trees are also susceptible to harm from rodents, rabbits, and deer throughout the winter. To prevent problems from small animals, be sure to wrap young trees tightly. Deer love to rub their antlers on the trunks of small trees, so create a barrier of chicken wire around the trunk, and secure it to T-posts in the ground at a height of 3 to 4 feet.
For a little extra help, apply a chemical repellant called Liquid Fence to your young trees. This liquid spray can be applied all winter when the temperatures are above freezing, and it will guard the tree against animals.
Take a little extra care to tuck your young trees in for the winter, and they will thank you for it in the spring!