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Slow to Spring

By Heather Vigil - March 26, 2019

Spring seems slow to arrive this year, with this start to spring being a cooler one than those of some recent years.  There are signs of spring everywhere… spring bulbs have emerged from the soil, perennials are starting to wake up, and the buds on the trees are beginning to swell-soon to emerge with brand new leaves.
This point in spring is a good time to consider a spring cleanup.  A walk on your property with this handy checklist will assist you in ensuring that your landscape is healthy and sparkles this spring:
-Remove any debris remaining from perennials or annuals of last year
-A light raking with a leaf rake for your lawn
-Removal of any extraneous or stray leaves
-Removing deadwood from trees and shrubs
-Cutting back of perennial ornamental grasses (back to 4-6” above ground height)
-Preparing of any staking materials used for perennials, such as cages for peonies
-Turning of soil in vegetable garden areas and amendments as needed
-Turning of existing mulch and adding new mulch as necessary
-Using a leaf blower to blow debris out of rock beds
-Divide fall blooming perennials
-Make ready your pruning tools and equipment
-Spring deep root fertilization for trees and shrubs.
-Apply a pre-emergent to flower/shrub beds to deter pesky weeds
-Apply a pre-emergent to your turf grass areas to deter annual weeds
-Activate your sprinkler system and adjust time according to our current temperatures and precipitation
-Contact your arborist for a visit to evaluate any necessary tree work or plant health care work, if needed
Spring can be a critical season for trees and shrubs.  Trees and shrubs are very active right now… moving a lot of water and nutrients.  Trees and shrubs spent all of the 2018 growing season manufacturing carbohydrates.  The carbohydrates manufactured last year are the resources they will utilize to flower, fruit, and seed for the 2019 growing season.  Trees and shrubs in the spring, while pushing new leaves, are at risk of freeze damage with the cold fronts that move through, because their new leaves are tender and have not hardened off.  When this happens, the leaves typically cannot survive these weather events, and the plant will have to push a new set of leaves.  Plants typically carry two years’ worth of reserves for weather events such as this.  If a plant sustains this type of spring freeze damage a couple times in the spring or for a few consecutive years, it is recommended the plant receive a deep root fertilization to recover some of the lost reserves.
Contact your Denver tree care professionals today to schedule your spring landscape health evaluation.