We’ve been hearing from dozens of customers every day that their trees are dying. People are seeing brown leaves and dead branches and they are desperately wanting to know what they need to do, or what can be done to save their trees. The problem with most of these trees right now is under-watering. This summer in the Phoenix valley has been extremely dry and the trees are suffering.
Note: Overwatering can also be a problem, so please read carefully and follow the guidelines in the watering guide that we’ve posted below.
Key symptoms of underwatering:
- Curled or wilted leaves that may be turning brown at the tips/edges
- Sparse canopies
- Off-color, scorched, or yellowish leaves
- Water more frequently (and deeper)
- Mulch to lock in moisture
Remedy 1: Watering
We recommend the landscape watering guide from Water Use It Wisely.
- Emitter placement. First of all, if you have an irrigation system installed, you should be sure you know where to place emitters. This can be found on pages 3-6 of the guide. A common mistake we see is emitters being positioned too close to the base of the tree. Emitters should be positioned around the tree’s dripline, meaning the outer edge of the canopy.
- Watering schedule. We suggest you follow the guidelines below, found on page 12 of the landscape watering guide. That means deeply watering trees every 1-3 weeks in the summer time, depending on how drought-tolerant your trees are.
Remedy 2: Mulching
Organic mulch is amazing because as it breaks down, it feeds organic matter into the soil, and it keeps the soil cool and moist so your tree is more protected from the relentless Arizona sun and dry weather. Just be sure that you don’t pile up mulch around the base. Make sure that the tree trunk can breathe. When mulch is piled up in the form of a “mulch volcano” it has the effect of inviting decay and pests. We recommend 3-5 inches of wood chips, but other organic materials can work as well.
Also, consider signing up for a free delivery of our tree mulch.