Improving Tree Health in an Urban Landscape
Most trees in the urban landscape are missing out on all the good stuff that the trees in the forest take for granted. Trees in the forest, for the most part, are protected by their friends when wind storms come through, have great soil that provides them with all kinds of available nutrients as well being left alone and undisturbed for years upon years. Unfortunately, that tree that you just love in your front yard that's surrounded by your driveway with its roots covered in thick water-sucking sod isn't as happy. Let's talk about a couple ways to help make that soil a bit healthier for your tree!
What a Tree Needs
16 essential elementsDid you know that in order for your tree to grow, it needs 16 essential elements for growth? They are divided into macronutrients (hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and sulfur) and micronutrients (molybdenum, copper, zinc, manganese, iron, boron, and chlorine).
Room to breatheA great way to relieve soil compaction issues is with use of an Air Spade, which is an air powered wand that fractures the soil and breaks up all the compacted areas. Once the soil has been fractured, it is best to attempt to create a soil profile that will benefit the tree. By blending composted manure, some mulch and into the soil, this helps create a profile that will support micro-organisms that help break down organic material and provide the tree with an ongoing source of nutrients. is really cool because it actually creates pore space in the soil, which makes areas for those soil decompacting workhorses to live!
Fertilizers and pH
Another way to provide trees with some of the main essential nutrients, which are Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K), is with the help of balanced fertilizers and a deep root feeding system. It is a best practice to be sure to do a soil test before creating any sort of fertilizer program for a tree. Once your soil test is complete and you have the results, you can easily see what nutrients are lacking in the soil around the tree as well as what the soil pH is. Soil pH is important because some elements, such as phosphorus and most micronutrients, are significantly influenced by soil pH.