Have You Started Your Watering Routine? Keep Fruit Trees Healthy with Denver Tree Experts Advice
Dev Team April 27, 2016

April is the time to get routine watering started – and the Denver tree services can offer the best advice for when to water and get a good spring start on your landscaping.

Another important area to focus is on fruit trees and fire blight. Ornamental trees are awfully pretty when they bloom, but the fruit they yield isn’t fit to eat. Property owners who have buckthorn, mulberry, persimmon, and female gingko know that this unwanted fruit is unsightly, smelly, and messy. For those who own fruit trees for their sweet harvest, fire blight features in their nightmares. Regardless of whether your fruit-bearing tree is there for looks or for production, Denver tree experts recommend prevention over correction.

Fruit reduction treatment

Tree service companies offer fruit reduction sprays to reduce or eliminate undesirable fruit development, particularly useful in trees valued more for their ornamental properties than for food production. Hormone sprays are used on fruit trees to minimize fruit production. Be aware that some chemicals may not be legal for household use and others may be prohibited entirely. A single application may be insufficient and require a second treatment.

The wise homeowner considers the following variables before spraying:

  • How much fruit the plant yields. If the tree tends to produce only a little fruit, hand removal might be the best option to eliminate unwanted fruit.
  • How valuable the plant is. If the time, effort, and expense of maintaining the plant outweighs its value to the property owner, then consider removing it and, perhaps, replacing it with a lower maintenance tree or shrub.
  • When the treatment is applied. The window of opportunity for foliar sprays can be narrow. American Arbor Care recommends application of fruit prevention sprays when the trees are 85 to 100 percent in bloom, but before the fruit sets. The Morton Arboretum suggests timing daytime application when temperatures are consistently between 65 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fire blight treatment

Cornell University stated that fire blight “is one of the most destructive diseases of apple and pear trees” and is prevalent during cool, wet springs. Whether your orchard has one tree or a thousand, here’s what to look for to determine if your fruit trees have been infected:

Shortly after blooming, blossoms appear water-soaked and gray-green, then quickly turn brown or black.

  • After the petals fall, leaves and stems on young shoot tips turn brown or black and curl “like a shepherd’s crook or candy cane.”
  • The diseased shoots seep “small droplets of sticky bacterial ooze” in warm and humid weather.
  • “Dark sunken cankers” will form in older wood.
  • Fruit will be undersized, darker than normal, and may be shriveled. It may also sport dark lesions and ooze more of that bacterial goo.

If left untreated, fire blight will not only ruin the harvest, but kill the entire tree. Plants other than apple and pear which are susceptible include quince, fire thorn, mountain ash, hawthorn, rose, and raspberry.

Controlling fire blight integrates practices that minimize the plant’s susceptibility, efforts reduce contagion, and applications that protect against infection. Horticultural experts recommend avoiding highly susceptible plant stock. In other words, choose hardier varieties. To reduce contagion, prune diseased branches and stems before the plant blooms, being careful to sterilize pruning shears after each cut. Destroy the pruned material; do not add the diseased branched the compost pile. Apply bactericide sprays when daytime temperatures reliably remain above 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Planet Natural also recommends early application of liquid copper at “silver tip and bud break” and repeating every three to five days as needed until the petals fall.

American Arbor Care offers comprehensive health management for trees and shrubs. Trust Denver’s tree pros to know what to do and when to keep your ornamental trees beautiful and your fruit trees productive. Call them at (303) 639-8584 to schedule a consultation.

Denver Tree Service: Learn the Differences Between Lilac Ash Borer and Emerald Ash Borer
Dev Team April 21, 2016

The dreaded scourge of ash trees everywhere–the emerald ash borer–has spread to Colorado. Ash trees in Colorado already suffer from a native pest, the lilac ash borer. Both species cause destruction, but they’re not the same. With assistance from the Colorado State University Extension, Denver tree service companies explain the difference.
The lilac ash borer is native to North America and prefers already-stressed trees, white ash being favored over green ash. This pest is the larva form (caterpillar) of a moth which is a type of clearwing borer. An early-season pest, the lilac ash borer concentrates egg laying in the bark on the lower trunks of trees.

The emerald ash borer is an Asian invader. Despite bans on transportation of firewood and infested wood, the emerald ash borer has spread steadily across North America. Thus far, only the most western states remain unaffected. This aggressive borer is the larva of a type of beetle known as the “metallic wood borer” and favors green ash over white ash. The emerald ash borer lays eggs on the bark surface throughout the tree from late May through early July.
If the unstoppable invasion of the emerald ash borer weren’t distressing enough, research at Wright State University discovered that the emerald ash borer has expanded its diet. Apparently, the pest finds the white fringetree, a relative of ash, tasty and hospitable.

The white fringetree is native to the savannas and lowlands of the southeastern United States. It is a small, deciduous tree with fluffy, white flowers. It is also known as Graybeard or old man’s beard and most often used as an ornamental in landscaping. It resembles the Chinese fringetree, an import native to eastern Asia with dense clusters of small, white flowers.

Pest Damage

After hatching, lilac ash borer larvae tunnel through the bark and feed in the interior of the tree. Heavily infested trees will show deformities in affected trunks and branches. Emerald ash borer larva also tunnel through the bark to feed on the tree’s interior just under the bark. Their feeding paths girdle the tree which show outwardly as a progressive thinning of the tree canopy.

Pest Management

Treatment of lilac ash borer infestation involves the use of a spray insecticide applied to the trunk and lower branches of the affected tree. Tree pros time the application to either immediately before or at the same time the eggs begin to hatch.

Treatment of emerald ash borer infestation involves repeated applications of insecticides via sprays, trunk injections, and soil treatments.

Treatments used to control lilac ash borer infestations are not appropriate for emerald ash borer infestations.

Your Best Resource

American Arbor Care offers numerous insect treatments throughout the growing season to keep your trees and shrubs healthy. Trust the tree service service professionals to accurately determine the pest infestation and to know how to control it. Call us at (303) 639-8584 to schedule a consultation and learn what can be done to make your lawn the envy of the neighborhood.

Just Add Water: A Good Spring Start for Denver Landscaping
Dev Team April 12, 2016

The Lawn Institute invites you to celebrate April, which is National Lawn Care Month. As winter weather recedes and warm spring weather finally takes a firm hold, homeowners can get a bit of a reprieve on the usual lawn care worries. Denver landscaping services know that the rainy days and cool nights of April prohibit much outdoor work and reduce evaporation, so activate your sprinkler systems, and just add water when things get a little dry. 

For those homeowners who take pride in their manicured lawns, the following are some facts to rebut the arguments of lawn dissidents who rail against traditional landscaping:

  1. Lawns prevent topsoil erosion by trapping more than 12 million tons of dirt and dust annually.
  2. Sod (i.e., turfgrass) is a natural “air conditioner” and can be 22 degrees Fahrenheit cooler than the surrounding pavement.
  3. Healthy turfgrass holds soil and filters rainwater, contributing to clean groundwater and preventing further soil erosion.
  4. A 50 X 50 square foot lawn produces sufficient oxygen to keep a family of four breathing, while absorbing carbon dioxide, hydrogen fluoride, and perosyacetyle nitrate.
  5. Simply viewing a soft green lawn or sitting on the grass relieves stress.

If you love a well-manicured lawn but detest the work that goes into keeping that lawn looking great, you may be considering hiring a lawn care service. April, being a low-maintenance lawn care month, is the perfect time to take action and find the contractor who’s right for your Denver landscaping needs.

Decide what you want. Do you merely want a lawn service to lift the burden of regular mowing, the full shebang of yard maintenance for grass, trees, shrubs, and flowerbeds, or something in between?

Does the service include unnecessary treatments?
 If the Denver landscaping service you’re considering routinely sprays for pests or problems that you haven’t experienced, then you may want to consider another company that provides the services your yard needs when it needs them.

Get referrals. Talk to friends and neighbors whose lawns you admire and envy. Surely some of them use landscaping services and will be glad to recommend those companies. Don’t forget to check with your local Better Business Bureau, too.

Request an inspection. A reputable company will inspect your lawn and offer a free estimate for service to bring it to tip-top shape. Any company that hasn’t seen your lawn cannot know what it may need. Be sure you understand exactly what services are included in the estimate.

Does the contractor offer a discount for prepaid accounts? Many Denver lawn service companies will offer a discount for prepayment of annual service contracts. This may be a great way to save money on a service contract that includes the services your yard needs.

Understand the guarantee. Some companies will guarantee results, others will refund money for unsatisfactory work.
Verify certification. Certification indicates that that the contractor has met rigorous, third-party standards of competence and makes the effort to stay current with industry updates and best practices. A certified professional has made this field a career, not just a job.

American Arbor Care offers comprehensive landscaping and lawn care services and maintains a staff of experienced, certified professionals. Call them at (303) 639-8584 to schedule a consultation and learn what can be done to make your lawn the envy of the neighborhood.

Denver Tree Services Recommend You Treat Ips Beetles Now
Dev Team April 5, 2016

If your spruce trees and pine trees are looking stressed, check them for western pine or ips beetles. Horticulturalist Joe Julian at the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension writes that ips beetles favor damaged or recently transplanted trees, but in times of heavy infestation, they will attack healthy spruce and pine trees. Denver tree pros recommend that homeowners treat their valuable pine and spruce trees now to kill off beetles emerging for their spring flight.

Also called engraver beetles, these pests embed themselves in tree bark and gouge the wood beneath. They’re small, about ⅛ to ⅜ inch long, reddish-brown to black, with a depressed cavity and spines at the rear end of the body. Eleven species of ips beetle are native to Colorado and each species prefers a specific type of spruce or pine. They breed fast, with two to four generations occurring within a single season.
To verify whether a tree is infested the Colorado State University Extension and Colorado State Forest Service suggest looking for these signs:

  1. The tree fades from the top down.
  2. Reddish colored boring dust will gather in bark crevices and at the base of the trunk.
  3. Peel back bark the size of a deck of cards and look for live insects.
  4. Beneath the bark, look for “Y” or “H” shaped paths or galleries scored into the wood.
  5. Woodpeckers feeding on the main stem or large branches.

Ips beetles emerge from winter hibernation when daytime temperatures consistently reach 50°F to 60°F and fly from March through November. They attack trees throughout the flight period, although most damage results from the spring flight.
Controlling ips beetle infestations requires vigorous tree growth. However, once a tree suffers infestation, there’s not much the homeowner can to do save the tree. Experts may recommend removing the infested tree.

Confine spraying to prevent infestations to large, valuable trees. (Western ips beetles prefer mature trees with at least a 4-inch diameter trunk (young, healthy trees being usually safe from infestations). Trees stressed by mistletoe, root cutting, wounded bark, soil compaction, drainage changes, drought, iron chlorosis, and infestation by other insects are particularly vulnerable to ips beetle infestation.

Carbaryl (trade name Sevin) and permethrin (trade names Astro, Dagnet) are the preferred chemical for preventative spraying and comes in a variety of formulations, with liquids often requiring dilution with water prior to application.

Protect Your Trees with Iron Treatments

In addition to preventative spraying, ease the stressors that make trees vulnerable to infestation. One stressor that may mimic other problems is iron chlorosis, caused by iron deficiency in high pH soils and evidenced by yellowing leaves. Iron chlorosis must be confirmed by soil testing. If confirmed, the problem can be treated. According to Utah State University Extension/Forestry, a “mixture of equal parts iron (ferrous) sulfate and elemental sulfur can produce lasting results and is relatively inexpensive.” Soil treatments may be less expensive than foliar sprays, but take action more gradually and result in a thorough treatment.

The certified arborists at your Denver tree service, American Arbor Care can assist homeowners with assessing and diagnosing the needs of their trees and perform deep root fertilization, insect treatment, and disease management. As licensed tree care professionals, our arborists are licensed in the application of pesticides. Call (303) 639-8584 to get your estimate started.

Storm Damage & Proper Tree Pruning Procedures for Prevention
Dev Team April 1, 2016

The weather as of late has been unpredictable to say the least. One moment, the sun is out casting warm rays on Denver, creating streams of water to flow through the streets, and the next moment – the sky is gray and heavy streams of snow fall to the ground. The blizzard was especially surprising, and created some major issues for home and business owners who hadn’t yet tended to their pruning needs. As your premier Denver tree service, we have a few things to point out that you should remember while we endure weather ranging across the board:

Storm Damage

Storm damage in Denver takes its toll on your plant life and trees in a big way. Mainly trees experience the worst of it with heavy snow and winds, the limbs tend to fall to the ground and can hinder growth. While it can be managed, it is best to allow your Denver tree service assess the damage and make their recommendations based on your specific situation. They will be able to enact a plan to care for your trees in the most effective way.

Proper Pruning

The best way to manage storm damage is actually taking preventative measures. Proper pruning procedures are integral throughout the year, especially before seasons we experience unpredictable and heavy weather patterns. Pruning your trees in winter and at the start of summer can prevent breakage of limbs and branches, creating health issues in the long run for your tree.

Early Spring Maintenance

In the first three to four weeks of spring, we see a lot of plant life beginning to wake back up. Bulb buds begin to emerge, color starts to show, and the green slowly starts to creep out into the sunshine. During this time, it is important to maintain a steady and regular watering schedule. If we have melting snow, it can take care of some of the hydration, but early watering is key for your fledgling plants to survive and grow strong in the upcoming months.

Preventative Measures for Insects

Remember the Emerald Ash Borer? It is getting close to that time again to keep the Emerald Ash Borers at bay and away from your trees. We will begin our injections for Emerald Ash Borers to keep your trees healthy and safe throughout the blooming season and into the summer. Scale insects are another major threat to your tree and shrub health. They are often undetected until you begin to notice your tree or shrub suffering or dying. The importance of catching the culprits before they are able to create issues cannot be understated. Allow the professionals to inspect and evaluate the overall health of your trees and shrubs to begin treatment as soon as possible if necessary.

Call our team of experts today to get started and assess your tree’s health. We can maintain a healthy landscape for you and your family and recommend the best plan of action for the future. If you have experienced storm damage at your home after the blizzard, get in contact with American Arbor Care. We can implement proper pruning procedures moving forward and get you back on track for this year’s beautiful spring season!

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