We’ve been experiencing quite a heat-wave this summer! Just as you take care to keep yourself cool and hydrated during the summer months, you should be actively involved in keeping your trees and shrubs properly watered as well.

City soils make access to water hard enough on our trees without the added stress of extreme heat. Compacted soils and an abundance of hard-scape means that, more often than not, more water is running off or evaporating than is getting deep into the soil where the roots need it most.

Here are some tips for keeping your trees happy and hydrated this summer:

  • On younger trees deep watering should be conducted two to three times per week during drought conditions. We suggest a hose on a slow dribble for 30 to 40 minutes.

    Move the end of the hose three times during this process to soak all sides of the root zone, about 12”-18” from the tree trunk.

    A soaker hose run for the same amount of time solves the issue of having to move the hose end around. Avoid spraying the foliage with water during the day as this can contribute to the leaves drying out and looking shrivelled.

  • Mulch is good for your tree, but not too much please! Mounding up mulch or additional soil against the base of the tree can actually cause critical damage.

    Always make sure that the root flare of the tree does not become buried by excess mulch or soil. We like to maintain about a 3” layer of mulch over the root zone, but not against the tree trunk itself.

  • Talk to your arborist about ways to improve the condition of your soil.

    We have tools to help with water access and retention like soil aeration tubes, buried downspouts and drywells. We can also use vertical mulching to help ease soil compaction and improve drainage.

    Treat your landscape with our signature ArborGain soil conditioner to greatly increase your tree’s ability to uptake the water that it desperately needs.


Summer is a good time to spot issues with your trees. If something doesn’t look right, give your arborist a call and have them come out for an inspection. They’ll be able to diagnose the problem and make recommendations for getting your trees back on track!



Be Good to Your Trees.

                         Because Your Trees are Good to You.


Kristie Nairn, BA, MA, MMst
Cohen & Master Tree and Shrub Services Ltd.