Growing a healthy tree with beautiful foliage each year can be a difficult feat. Tree care takes time and knowledge, and some of the techniques that homeowners use to try to help the tree can actually cause harm. A skilled arborist can give you advice specific to the trees on your property. However, in between tree service appointments, you should watch out for these common mistakes.

3 Tree Care Pitfalls

1. Leaving Objects Near the Trunk

If you have an object touching the trunk or tied around it, it may damage the bark. It can also create an inroad for insects and fungi. The tree may grow around the object, weakening and strangling the trunk. Common examples of potentially dangerous items include tree girdles meant to protect the trunk, tree stakes that are used unnecessarily, and mulch within six inches of the base of the trunk. Swings, decorations, and bird feeders may also damage the tree. 

2. Trimming Incorrectly 

tree careYearly pruning is healthy for the tree when done correctly. Regular trimming helps train the branches to form a healthy, attractive shape and prevent the tree from growing unbalanced. It also removes dead or dying wood to prevent further damage. However, pruning at the wrong time, particularly in the late summer and fall, can lead to winter die-off. This is because the tree isn't able to salvage nutrients from the leaves to help it through winter. Also, pruning too much can leave the tree without enough leaves to support itself and with too many vulnerable openings for bugs to enter. 

3. Applying Harmful Chemicals

Herbicides and some types of pesticides can be just as harmful to your tree as they are to the pests you're trying to abate. You should talk to a tree care professional before applying these treatments anywhere near a tree's root system. If you're worried about weeds, apply mulch instead. This substance will prevent weeds from growing while also protecting the tree's roots and preserving moisture. Also, watch out for salty runoff from roads, sidewalks, and driveways. The salt used for road deicing can weaken or kill a tree.


For help creating a tree care plan that will protect your property from these mistakes, contact Compton's Tree Services in Kernersville, NC. Serving Forsyth County for over 25 years, they use state-of-the-art equipment and have extensive education in tree care, trimming, and treatment. They'll also help with tree removals as needed. Call (336) 993-4069 or visit their website to get started.