After you have determined the correct site for your new young tree and it is correctly planted with root flare exposure, etc. (see last month’s blog for more information about this), water will be important for the first couple of weeks.

If you use drip irrigation tubes around your tree, allow enough room so the tubing doesn’t girdle the root flare area of tree. We see this often, unfortunately. Eventually, the drip irrigation should be removed from maturing trees, as there are enough roots to maintain tree. If drip irrigation isn’t properly removed, it will eventually grow into the tree and can cause it to die.

If you can’t or choose not to use drip irrigation, you will have to manually water tree with hose. (Location is obviously important for this part of tree care…you don’t want to plant so far away you can’t easily get to the tree to water it.) For best results, slowly turn the water valve to allow a slow flow of water, letting the area around tree to soak. Providing lots of water at a high pressure isn’t very effective, as most of the water will run off. Then just remember to keep the area moist.

Once your tree is established, after month or so, water should only be necessary during extreme hot days, during droughts, or with lack of consistent rain.