Every homeowner invested in their landscape inevitably asks the question, “How do I feed my plants and trees?” While many plants and trees are incredibly low maintenance, there are some actions you can take to ensure optimal levels of health all year long. All plants and trees benefit from being fed, but different plants and trees have different needs. With a wide variety of products available and varying nutritional needs, it can seem complicated. This is why we have put together this guide, to assist you in priming your landscape to thrive this coming year.
Timing: When to Feed
As Trees, shrubs and plants bloom in the spring, this energy consumption typically leads to a need for plant food or fertilization. Additionally, feeding your plant material in the spring after they bloom, prepares them for a good bloom the following year. Not only should you rely on your calendar, but your plants will tell you what they need. If your plant or tree is growing quickly and well, you are probably okay. On the contrary, if they are not growing or showing yellowing and signs of decay, intervention may be needed.
If you are new to landscaping and gardening, or just don’t know exactly what kind of food your plant material needs, you could benefit from soil testing. A good soil sample will provide you data on your soil that will allow you to choose the best fertilizer for your plant.
At Nature’s Mulch, we offer a wide variety of fertilizers. As a nursery, we pride ourselves on being able to consult our customers on the best fertilizers for their properties. One such fertilizer we have found to be great for ornamental trees and shrubs is the “Anderson’s 14-7-7.” It is a professional grade fertilizer that provides essential nutrients, feeding your plant material. We recommend consulting a professional when it comes to fertilizer, as guessing will leave you with inefficiencies, and growth left on the table.
Best Watering Practices
For new plants and trees, more frequent watering will be required. For a couple weeks after planting, you will want to water daily, and then slowly decrease your intervals, until you are watering weekly. When watering, you want to apply water directly over the root ball and create a water reservoir, using a slow trickle. When it comes to more established trees you will typically not need to water unless you are in a drought, or period of infrequent rainfall. Do not limit your watering to only one season, as these periods of infrequent rainfall can come year-round.
Also, begin to think about mulching your trees and shrubs, as this will maximize your water intake and plant health. As you look to water your plants, pay close attention to the exact specifications for certain plant types, and water accordingly.
Caring for Plants in the Spring
As the temperature warms up, you will probably take care of your plants a little more intensely than your trees and shrubs. Watering your plants more frequently, and doing so gradually, will ease them into the warmer weather. Additionally, do your spring cleaning and prune your plants, looking only for poor foliage. Last but not least, as with your trees and shrubs, consider fertilization, as it never hurts.
As you learn how to feed your plants and trees, remember us. The professionals at Nature’s Mulch are ready and eager to help you with any of your landscaping needs. Come visit us at Nature’s Mulch, or give us a call at (502) 442-7668.