Davey is proud to appear on St. Louis’ KTRS, NewsRadio 550 station this summer and fall. Each Saturday afternoon, one of our local district managers will discuss several tree and landscape topics—some of which we will feature on the Davey blog!
Davey Tree Arborist on the Air: Last week, Greg Wilson, district manager of Davey’s West St. Louis residential tree care services, discussed summer tree and plant care with radio hosts Jim McMillan and John Shea of the “Inside Out” show. The following script is based on Wilson’s interview.
KTRS: We are confounded about how much water to give to our plants and trees this time of year—how much is too much?
GW: In the last several weeks we have had a lot of rain in the St. Louis area. We are getting many calls about too much water and what it’s doing to homeowners’ plants and trees. We are especially seeing damage to dogwood trees due to the rain, which causes the trees to lose their leaves. Also, we are seeing a lot of anthracnose in this area because of the moisture.
KTRS: What exactly is anthracnose for those who don’t know what it is?
GW: It’s an airborne fungus in trees and plants caused by the amount of humidity and rain—triggering leaves to curl, spot and discolor. I’m seeing these fungus signs in almost every landscape I’ve visited recently, so don’t be alarmed. Trees are resilient and can usually handle this type of fungus well. If you are worried your trees and plants are infected, contact a professionally trained arborist for a free consultation.
KTRS: What about newly planted trees? Should we stake them out this time of year due to the fluctuating conditions?
GW: High winds and heavy rain cause newly planted trees to fall or grow crooked, so tree stakes can be a viable option. There are different ways to stake a tree but I suggest having a professional do it; that way, you know it’s staked properly. The big problem I see when people stake a tree is that they don’t take the stakes out once the tree is established—allowing the tree to grow around the stakes and wire.
KTRS: How often should we water our trees because of the shifting weather?
GW: Keep an eye on your soil. Look at the soil beds around your trees and plants and determine how wet or dry they are. Then, water accordingly. The turf around your landscape tends to soak up the moisture from your trees and plants, especially in a lawn setting. In order to combat this watering tension, water mature trees with a trickle hose a couple times a week. Sprinklers cause water run-off and only water the surface of your landscape instead of getting into the clay soil. It’s similar to watering a house plant--if you water too fast the water goes to the bottom of the pot instead of locked in the soil. The trickle hose allows for slow, deep watering that will keep your trees and plants healthy all season long.
For more tree and plant care advice during summer’s fluctuating conditions, listen to the full interview with Dreyer.