5 Common Tree Care Mistakes

person pruning a tree branch

Learn the Best Way to Take Care of Trees in Kansas City

A major part of home maintenance includes caring for your outdoor spaces – and in particular, your trees. As any plant enthusiast knows, each type of flora has its own unique set of care guidelines, and the same can be said for trees.

If you provide improper care for a houseplant, your biggest loss is that you now have an empty pot that you can refill for the cost of a coffee. But if you provide improper care for a tree, you’re running the risk of even bigger problems.

Keep reading to learn the five most common tree care mistakes that Kansas Citians make, and find out how you can ensure the trees on your property are as healthy and safe as possible.

#1 – Volcano Mulching

It’s generally OK to mulch around young or newly-planted trees to help their roots retain moisture and prevent damage from lawnmowers. But some people opt to “volcano mulch,” which means applying a huge mound of mulch around the trunk of a tree. This best practice in tree care.

Not only are you wasting money on expensive mulch, but you aren’t doing your young tree any favors. Consider these major drawbacks:

  • Volcano mulching deprives roots of their ability to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide – which is necessary for growth.
  • Mulch volcanoes attract bark-chewing rodents, which can damage your tree.
  • Mulch volcanoes hold moisture, which fosters tree disease-like cankers and rots.

If you’re planning to plant a new tree or hire an arborist to plant one for you, be sure to ask about proper mulching techniques.

#2 – Topping Trees

If you’ve ever seen a tree with branches cut to stubs or dramatically chopped through the canopy, you’ve seen a tree that’s been improperly topped, headed, or lopped. Some people top trees because they’ve either grown too large for where they’re planted, or they’re trying to avoid utility lines and other structures. However, topping a tree is disfiguring and brings certain risks with it.

Topping a tree can cause:

  • Death.
  • Rapid growth of weak, upright branches, which create an unsafe structure.
  • An invitation for disease, pests, or sunscald.
  • Hastened decay.
  • Reduced value. (Yes, your tree adds value to your property!)

Knowledgeable tree care services in Kansas City will never top a tree – and nor should you!

#3 – Pruning Live Oaks in Summer

Although emergency pruning is necessary any time of year, for general tree care, it’s important to avoid pruning live oaks in the summer. Pruning during summer months makes your oak tree prone to a disease called oak wilt.

Oak wilt is spread by pests who sense an opening in your newly-trimmed tree. Infestations of pests eventually will kill your oak tree.

Wait to prune your oaks until the fall or winter – from November to March – to avoid oak wilt.

#4 – Leaving Hazardous or Declining Trees on Your Property

Dead or dying trees, rotting limbs, or trees infected with disease or pests pose a danger to people, your property, and the environment. In an effort to save money upfront, many homeowners opt to leave hazardous or declining trees until they become a serious problem.

And although it’s true that your insurance policies will likely cover most damage caused by falling trees and limbs, if your adjuster proves you knew the tree was unhealthy, you’ll be paying out of pocket for everything – including tree clean-up, vehicle and home repairs, and medical bills.

At a certain point, it’s time to get estimates for tree removal near you. If you’re unsure whether your tree needs to be removed, or if other methods of tree care could save it, contact our tree service based in Grandview, Missouri.

#5 – Not Hiring a Tree Care Professional

When it comes to tree care, the smartest decision you’ll ever make is to call a professional to address problems and keep your trees healthy. Professional tree care services in Kansas City send trained and knowledgeable technicians and arborists to your property to perform a variety of tasks, like pruning, planting, cabling, storm clean-up, and even tree removal near you.

The average person hasn’t been trained on safety procedures, tree health diagnoses, or strategic pruning, which means counting on a professional is the right thing to do for your oaks, elms, maples, and more.

Don’t Make a Mistake! Contact Eisenhower Tree Care

For professional tree care, schedule a consultation with a Kansas City arborist who cares about the health of your trees. With more than 15 years of experience and the right equipment for any size job, Eisenhower Tree Care knows all the best ways to take care of trees. Contact us today.