The summer heat and drought has affects on trees

POSTED: Monday, August 1, 2011 - 4:43pm
UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 9:54am

COLLEGE STATION -- As this drought continues, you've probably noticed the changes in the grass and ground but what about the trees?

Even if you don't notice it, the trees are suffering right now just like everything else.

Just like the ground and grass, trees are no exception to suffering permanent damage in this heat.

Pete Smith with the Texas Forest Service says, "Now that we are getting into the hundred degree temperatures for extended periods of time I think we are going to see some pretty dramatic impacts on our trees."

Those impacts can range in severity.

"What you are going to see is stress build up in the trees and as the trees become more and more weakened they are more susceptible to insect and disease pressure," said owner of Aggieland Green, Tim Schnabel.

Once a tree is under a lot of stress, there's not much hope for survival.

Water is your best bet but Schnabel says watering your yard won't be enough to do the trick.

"A lot of people expect that by watering the grass your trees are going to get enough water but what they don't realize is the grass is so aggressive in taking the water that's given to the lawn that the trees aren't really left with anything," said Schnabel.

A rule of thumb to always follow is to measure your tree in diameters and then times that number by ten. That should give you how many gallons a week you should be using to water your trees.

"We typically look at soaker hoses or some sort of a slow watering system that can infiltrate the soil below the grass so that the roots of the trees are actually getting some access to some moisture," said Smith.

Both tree experts say this problem is only going to worse unless we see a significant amount of rainfall soon.

And tress next spring and summer will still be suffering from this year's drought.

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