Tree Care

Tree Care and Extreme Weather


Bud Franklin

Excerpt from Aug 2012 Tree Tips Newsletter

For those of you who are first timers, this newsletter is provided to share information about the care and maintenance of our wonderful trees. They provide so many benefits to our lives: Oxygen, shade, beauty, balance, habitat and so much more.  Like our bodies, as they grow and mature they need more of the resources that were once taken for granted in youth. If grown in the wild they would have to accept the consequences of what nature provided. However, when we plant them in our yards we have the ability to control, adjust and extend those resources so that a plant can live a long and healthy and beautiful life.

There are, however, some elements beyond our control.  The weather this summer was a prime example.  From record breaking temperatures in all 50 states, flooding along the Missouri, Ohio, Mississippi Rivers and their tributaries.  Tornadoes in the midwest and the south, droughts in Texas, and Haboobs (duststorm) in the desert. I had to use that word.

Haboob (Arizona Republic)


These weather conditions can be expected to effect your trees both in the short term and the long term.  Some of the short term problems are:

•            Wind, Hail and Lightning-broken and damaged roots, trunk, branches and foliage.

•            Drought– foliage dessication, branch die back, older leaf drop.

•            Soil Saturation-disease and weakened and unstable root system.


The long term problems can be more subtle and slower to manifest.  All of the above problems can cause the tree to produce fewer carbohydrates which in time will produce less root development, less growth, more chlorosis of the foliage and impact the reproductive cycle.  Physical damage can pose a risk to both you, your neighbors and your tree.  The damaged area, if not repaired, can offer a site for insect or disease infestation.

Bradford Pear Wind Damage


Drought can create a situation that lowers the trees natural resistance to insect and disease.

Bark Beetle Damage on Pine Trees


Soil saturation by water can cause a weakened root system and an environment susceptible to disease as well as the lack of nutrient uptake.

Uprooted Tree-Soil Saturation & High Winds


When these unusual weather patterns strike-damage occurs but a well maintained tree is the best defense.  Proper irrigation (deeply once a month for mature trees), fertilization and proper pruning go a long way to prevent unnecessary damage.  Medicap MD, Medicap FE, Phoscap, Medicap MN and Medicap ZN are systemic nutrient implants that will prevent most nutrient deficiencies.  Late summer or early fall is the ideal time to use Medicap MD .  It is the complete nutrient implant designed to last for multiple seasons and prevent many symptoms which result from nutrient deficiency brought on by stress and severe weather.

About the Author

Bud Franklin

I am a horticulturist with a B.S. in Horticulture from Colorado State University. I have been in the nursery business my entire life and currently reside in Arizona. My philosophy is to provide practical solutions to horticultural problems. Although I specialize in trees I have experience and training in all areas of urban horticulture including plant material, soil chemistry, pest control, plant propagation, irrigation and landscape management and installation.

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