Winter Watering

Winter is here, the temperatures have dropped and the irrigation lines have been blown out which means our trees are no longer getting regularly watered by anything but Mother Nature.
Naturally we don’t get a lot of snow fall in the Grand Valley… on average about 6 inches of snow. If we are lucky to get 6 inches, about half of it is air, then some of the remaining 3 inches might evaporate or run off. We might get a little rain before and after the winter months, but it’s usually not enough to sustain our non native trees and shrubs here in the valley.
This is where you come in as the tree care taker. Most of our trees and shrubs in the valley are non native, therefore, this requires some extra love and attention. It is so crucial to be sure and water your trees all year long. Yes, that means throughout all 12 months of the year!
CSU Extension has a wonderful fact sheet on why and how to winter water. You need to water 10 gallons per diameter inch of trunk, ONCE a month while the irrigation is off. That means if you have a 12 inch trunk, you should water it 120 gallons ONCE a month. Be sure to water under the entire canopy of the tree and NOT just next to the trunk. You can accomplish this by using a sprinkler head on the end of your hose while you move it around ever so often.
One might ask, “How do I know if I’m getting 120 gallons down on my 12 inch tree?” It is very simple! Put your sprinkler head into a 5 gallon bucket and then time how long it takes to fill it up. From there, you can do the math and know exactly how long it will take to put down 120 gallons.
An easy way to remember when to winter water is do it around every major Holiday. Water around Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Valentines Day.
Your trees will love you and give you shade and oxygen for many more years as long as you give them some lovin’. Also, DON’T forget to unhook your hose from your house when your done winter watering, or else you might be watering the inside of your house.

Happy New year from everyone at T4 Tree Service.