Northern California Coastal & Inland Valleys

April, 2010
Regional Report

Thin Apples

The young fruit on apple trees should be thinned to ensure a good harvest. Leave only one fruit every six inches along the branches. This process takes some time on a ladder, but is worth the effort come harvest time.

Install Drip Irrigation for Redwood Trees

Redwood trees rely on summer fog for water. In areas that don't get morning fog, set soaker hoses under the canopy and plan to water deeply once every two weeks during the dry season. The larger a redwood is, the more water it will need.

Remove Ivy from Trees

Cut, pull and remove ivy growing in trees. Ivy will eventually strangle and kill a mature tree, and the additional weight of the ivy can also break large branches. To remove ivy, cut the vines near the base of the trunk, stripping and removing as much as possible by hand.

Protect Trees Planted in Lawns

To prevent damage from mowers and string trimmers, cut the bottom out of a plastic nursery container, then cut a slit in the side and place it around the base of the trunks of young trees. The plastic will protect the trunk from bumps and bruises. Inadvertent damage from string trimmers and mowers injures the cambium layer, inhibiting the flow of vital nutrients from the roots to the canopy and allowing access for insects and disease.

Dig a Watering Basin for Young Trees

Young trees need to be watered for the first few years of life; after that they can take care of themselves. Build a watering basin with a shovel or hoe by mounding soil several inches high in a continuous circle around the drip line, then tamping it down lightly. Once every two weeks, fill the basin with water twice.

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