In Utah, tree disease is one of the most common reasons for die-off in our forests. Your home’s landscape is equally vulnerable to the challenges that affect our state’s most common species.
Once disease sets in, you have no choice but to treat the problem or remove the tree. But with just a little planning and effort on your part, you can help discourage tree diseases and pests.
Utah arborists recommend that homeowners use a strategy that integrates proactive care, pruning, sanitation, watering and fertilization.
Choose Tree Species for Your Location
One of the best ways to avoid tree disease is to select varietals that are well-suited to your location.
You can accomplish this by choosing species that are well-adapted to your property’s hardiness zone. If you select a species that can’t handle the cold temperatures in your area, winter weather can damage the bark, making it vulnerable to pests and disease.
In northern Utah, most locations fall into hardiness zone 5. However, depending on your elevation and other factors, yours may be zone 4, 5 or 6.
Choose Tree Disease-Resistant Species
Another way to avoid problems is to select varietals that are resistant to common types of Utah tree diseases.
For example, the Bell Golden apple is resistant to aphids. Honeycrisp apples resist fire blight. The Japanese lilac is resistant to most diseases and pests, and does well in high-pH soils.
The Utah State University Extension has a handy tree browser that you can use to search for species that are appropriate for your location.
Prevent Tree Diseases with Proper Pruning & Sanitation
Proper pruning is necessary to maintain the health of any tree, but pruning is especially important for resisting pests and diseases. Pruning allows sunlight to penetrate and air to circulate properly, discouraging mildew and disease. But as different species have different pruning requirements, talk to your arborist to develop an appropriate pruning schedule.
Clean up all dropped fruit promptly, remove unwanted fruit and fallen leaves. Nearby woodpiles can also provide a haven for disease-carrying pests. Keep weeds and turf from growing up to the base of trees by applying a layer of mulch periodically.
If your trees develop a problem with pests or disease, it is critical that you have an arborist out to evaluate and treat the problem. Otherwise, it can kill the affected specimen and spread to nearby trees.
Proactive Tree Care Helps Prevent Pests & Disease
A healthy tree will always have the best chance of resisting disease. By using a professional arborist for seasonal tree care, you can help prevent problems from developing. And if diseases or pests attempt to infiltrate your property, an arborist can spot it early for more effective treatment.
In northern Utah, Reliable Tree Care offers a complimentary yard analysis to homeowners in Murray, Utah, and throughout the Salt Lake City area. We can recommend a schedule for seasonal pruning, fertilization and treatment. And if a problem develops, our arborists can provide expert tree disease control.