Tips For Spotting Winter Damage To Your Landscaping

Posted on: 15 December 2017

Once you've invested in your landscaping, you'll want to preserve that investment by taking proper care of your trees and shrubs through the winter. Sure, your flowers and other plants are made to go dormant or be moved inside, but trees and shrubs are exposed to the winter weather all season long. Before spring hits, you should be aware of the warning signs that your landscape suffered winter weather damage.

Look For Signs Of Winter Weather Burns

When your plants are exposed to the wind, cold, and direct sun combination of the winter season, it can lead to burn damage on them. Some of the clearest signs of this include things like golden brown needles on your evergreens, bleached leaves, or dark reddish bark on your plants. You may even see sunken areas along your tree trunks, which is another indication of winter weather burns.

Salt Contamination

The salt that you often use to remove the ice from your walkways and driveway can actually damage your landscaping. It will dry out trees and shrubs, especially if it seeps into the ground around where the roots are because the plants will draw that salted water up into the root system. You may see leaves and needles that look scorched or deep brown, which is an indication that your landscaping has been dehydrated. You'll most often see this happen to the landscaping nearest your walkways, but even those facing the road can suffer it because salt is often used by local street crews.

Damaged Roots

Winter temperatures can reach lows that are cold enough to actually kill the roots of some of your landscaping. Those things with the most delicate roots, including young trees and small shrubs, may suffer frozen roots when temperatures dip into the teens. The roots will wilt and die come spring, so you'll see those plants die off slowly. If it's a harsh winter, be mindful of the condition of your more delicate landscaping.

Pest Infestations And Damage

Since food is scarce in the winter, your trees and shrubs can often become the buffet of choice for all kinds of pests in the area. Rodents, mice, rabbits, and other animals will feed off the branches, bark, and smaller twigs of your landscaping. This can leave the plants more exposed to the elements and potentially risk further damage that's irrecoverable in the spring. Be attentive to your landscaping all winter long for signs that any wildlife is making a meal out of them. Try to use barrier products to keep them away, or treat exposed areas at the recommendation of your landscaper to prevent more extensive harm.

Contact a company like W.H. Boyer, Inc. for more information and assistance.