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Trees that grow in a natural environment tend to be healthier. The main reason for this is because the organic layer that covers the forest floor is undisturbed. The organic layer is a giant compost pile. The compost is used by the trees for nutrients. The organic layer also fights soil compaction by spreading the weight of any traffic over a wide area.

Trees that grow in our yards often have a nutrient deficiency. The deficiency is caused by removing the organic layer and introducing competition. The organic layer is removed during construction to allow the soil to compact better. Competition comes from grasses, shrubs, and flowers. The tree now has lost the compost pile and must compete with other plants for the nutrients that are not being replaced naturally.

Trees might need a general fertilizer or a special micro-nutrient fertilizer to corrects certain deficiencies. A licensed tree surgeon will be able to tell what needs done.

Trees can be fertilized several different ways. Different methods are listed below to give you an idea of what your tree may need.

Vertical Fertilizing\Mulching
Vertical fertilizing is one of the most popular methods of fertilizing trees. This method uses an auger to drill holes into the soil in a grid pattern. The holes are drilled to a depth of between 12 and 18 inches deep. At this depth, grass roots can’t reach the fertilizer. The purpose of the pattern is to cover as much of the root area as possible. A fertilizer that incorporates macro and micro nutrients is the best for feeding trees. A fertilizer for trees should be of a 3-1-1 or a 3-1-2 ratio. (i.e. 12-4-4 or 12-4-8) This method amends nutrient deficiencies in the soil.

Vertical mulching incorporates mulch and\or mychorrhizae fungus into the soil. Mulch is used to lessen soil compaction. Mychorrhizae fungus is a beneficial fungus that aids the tree in uptake of nutrients.

Liquid Soil Injection
This method uses the same pattern and depth as vertical fertilizing. The only difference is that a liquid fertilizer is used instead of a dry granular. This method also amends nutrient deficiencies in the soil.

Tree injection
This method uses a liquid which is forced into the vascular system of the tree. This method does not amend the soil and will not correct soil deficiencies. Tree injection is best when used with soil amendment. Tree injection can be harmful to the tree if improper done. Tree injection should be used when the tree may become too stressed or die before it can absorb soil fertilizer.

At Ickes Tree Service, Inc, we use Liquid Soil Injection and\or tree injection to correct nutrient deficiencies. Call today for a quote on this valuable service.

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