When beautiful fall weather is replaced nearly overnight by cool temperatures and a light dusting of snow for some (gasp!), I start to get emails from concerned homeowners about their trees surviving winter. Fortunately, we won't have to worry about that too much here in the Pacific Northwest as our winters tend to be more mild than elsewhere in the country.
There's a few maintenance items you can do before winter sets in to prep your trees for the cooler days ahead.
Apply a layer of mulch or leaves around the base of more vulnerable trees. Mulch acts like an insulator, holding in heat and moisture. This can help your trees get through a period of frosty nights.
Remove dead wood from your trees. Should we experience any substantial snowfall, dead branches can easily fall from the weight of the snow.
Prune to relieve heavy tree canopies. Snow loads can break branches of many trees.
If you need to remove snow, start from the bottom of the tree. Starting at the top will drop more snow on the lower branches, potentially breaking them from the very activity that was intended to reduce breakage.
Most of your trees will weather the winter months without any problems, but if you have questions about proper tree care, please reach out!