Four Ways To Protect Your Landscape from Severe Weather

October 22, 2014 at 3:01 pm

7968934_lThat time of year is coming up: the time when severe and damaging weather is more likely. So many people don’t realize just how bad severe weather can wreak havoc on your landscape by killing plants, discoloring leaves, and damaging trees. There are, however, a few steps you can take to minimize risks and protect your landscape during the riskiest months.

Protecting Against Sun Scald

Sun scald is a particular risk during the winter months when temperatures are low and the sky has only a few clouds. Trees facing south or southwest with no protection from the sun (through a building or hill, for example) are exposed to intense sunlight that scalds bark and causes it to dry and crack.

Young trees, those that have been recently incorporated into your landscape design, trees moved from a shady location, and those with thin bark are all danger of sun scald. To decrease the risk, avoid pruning lower branches during winter months as their foliage provides protection for the bark beneath. In addition, cover trunks with either a commercial tree wrap or a plastic guard in the fall and only remove it in the spring after the final frost.

Avoiding Discoloration of Evergreen Leaves

Extremely cold temperatures combined with a harsh wind can cause leaves of evergreens to turn brown or become bleached. Yew, arborvitae, hemlock, new trees to your landscape, and plants that continue growing late in the season are the highest risk of damage. Consider incorporating a burlap barrier along the south or southwest of your landscape or changing your landscape design to remove susceptible trees or plants from areas that receive strong winds.

Staying Safe From Animal Damage

Extreme weather can also cause animals to seek refuge in your landscape and feed off your plants or tree bark, which may destroy the appearance of your landscape design. You can keep trees safe from rodent damage by installing a mesh of hardware cloth around trunks or even using a plastic guard on smaller trees.

It is also necessary protect your shrubs. Install a fence of chicken wire around beds only after you have checked that there are no rabbits already inside. If deer are the problem, a better option may be to use repellent containing thiram on small trees and shrubs.

Keeping Salt Out Of Your Landscape

Salt for de-icing roads and walkways can run off into your landscape damaging roots and later, once the plant has absorbed the salt, the foliage. Plants that are close enough be sprayed from passing vehicles may suffer from even greater damage. Plan your landscape design to ensure that only salt-tolerant plants will receive spray and runoff of salt.

For help creating a landscape design that can withstand any type of severe weather, contact us at E-Landscape. We can design, install, and maintain a landscape that will remain aesthetical pleasing throughout the year, even during the harshest temperatures.