Tree Care FAQ

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Here are some frequently asked questions about Tree Care. Click on the +/- to see the full answer.

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My trees were sprayed for aphids a few months ago and now I have them again. Why?

Aphids are very persistent and can move from plant to plant. During heavy infestations, more than one application is often necessary.

Can the cankerworm (oakworm) be prevented?

Many companies offer applications, like dormant oil, to prevent cankerworm infestations. However, this does little in prevention. Due to the unpredictable egg-laying of the female cankerworm, it's difficult to time any preventative treatments. Therefore, preventative applications may not work.

Borers have entered my trees. What can I do?

Once borers have entered the tree, little can be done. Once damage has been done, it can not be reversed. The key?

How can I prevent aphids?

Two applications that can effectively reduce large outbreaks of aphids are a dormant oil application and tree injection. They should be applied before large infestations have occurred.

Leaves on my tree are yellow, what could be the problem?

If it's fall time, it's okay. If the leaf should be green and it's not, more than likely it is iron chlorosis. Other possibilities are spider mites, over-watering, or diseases.

Since the lawn benefits from a late fall fertilizer, should I also fertilize the trees and shrubs?

Although lawns benefit greatly from a late fall fertilizer, trees and shrubs do not. The fertilizer, which is mainly nitrogen, encourages new shoot growth in woody plants. Encouraging new growth at the end of the growing season may allow a greater chance of winter damage. Late fall pruning is also not recommended, unless the branches are damaged or my break to a heavy snow load.

Is it a good idea to use grass clippings as a mulch around my roses to protect them from the winter cold?

Grass clippings do not make good mulch for roses. They can become matted together and not allow air to dry out the clippings. The clippings often become moist, which will cause the roses canes to rot. Bark mulch works much better.