Trees and landscapes often get neglected due to busy schedules and lifestyles. They get planted and cared for during the first year of getting established, but this care and maintenance tends to taper off. If trees and shrubs are planted and left alone, they will fall victim to disease or insect invasion at some point, especially if they are types that are more susceptible. To protect your investments, it is far better to attend to their care and protection on a regular basis to stay on top of any tree issues.
Several Common Tree Issues in the Treasure Valley
Chlorosis is one of the most common and most noticeable tree health concerns we see in the Treasure Valley. Leaves turn bright green and eventually yellow due to a lack of chlorophyll. If not treated early the tree will eventually lack the nutrients it needs and die. Because it is undernourished it will be more susceptible to insect invasion and disease.
There are a few different types of borers in the Treasure Valley. They are invasive wood-boring beetles that feed primary on birch and ash trees. This insect’s larvae feed on the vascular tissue of the tree affecting its ability to transport water and nutrients. This is not an insect to ignore. Infested trees can die after two to three years, but heavily infested trees can die within one year. Trees infested with borers will start showing dieback at the top of the tree, and will eventually extend to the major branches and main stem. Emergence holes may be seen on infested branches and trunks.
Cottony Maple Scale
Cottony Maple Scale is a soft scale insect that attacks a large variety of woody plants. Its favored host is maple trees, although it has been found on a number of other species as well. Heavy infestations may kill weakened trees and cause branch dieback on healthy trees. This insect leaves a sticky honeydew beneath its canopy which attracts wasps. A noticeable 1/4"-1/2" white egg sac that looks like a cotton ball is the symptom to look for.
Aphids are sap-sucking insects that attack all types of deciduous trees and shrubs. This insect can cause damage in a variety of ways including stunted growth, mottled and wilted leaves, yellowing, and in some cases possible loss. They feed in clusters usually on the undersides of leaves. Early detection is key, so regular monitoring of your landscape is the first important step to keeping aphids under control. This issue also leaves a sticky honeydew beneath its canopy.
Incorrect Watering Practices
Homeowners often error on the side of overwatering their trees and shrubs which can drown and destroy their investments. This is particularly true with newly planted trees. A good rule of thumb is to water less frequently, but more deeply. All vegetation achieves optimum health when their soil and roots can dry out slightly in between waterings. Here is an article regarding tree selection and irrigation for trees in southwestern Idaho.
There are a lot of different types of trees in the Treasure Valley and each one has unique needs and challenges. We can stay ahead of most problems with a regular maintenance program that includes an early spring dormant oil and late spring systemic insecticide. Some trees will require additional specialized treatments. Visit our website to view images of these issues and to learn more about our tree care services that can protect your trees year round. Give us a call today if you would like more information about our full-season tree care program, call 208-585-9400.