How to protect small trees from frost


How to Protect Newly Planted Trees and Shrubs from Frost

One of the joys of planting a new tree is getting to experience all the “firsts.” The first spring bud break, the first fall color change, or the first flush of tasty fruit.

And then there’s your tree’s first few winters. Frankly, they can be tough to get through. Young trees are much more vulnerable to cold weather damage than mature ones, so they need extra help from you to bear the elements.

Below, get tips on protecting newly planted trees and shrubs from frost damage.

Best Way To Protect Trees From Frost

The key to protecting newly planted trees from winter damage is shielding them from harsh elements—from the top of the canopy down to the roots.

Fruit trees and any trees with thin bark are especially vulnerable to an issue called sun-scald. During a warm winter day, tree bark heats up, causing the tissue under the bark to take a quick break from dormancy. But as soon as the sun sets and freezing temperatures swoop in, that tissue under the bark freezes to death. As a result, large, sunken areas develop on the bark.

And, sadly, the damage doesn’t stop there. Freezing temps can also damage a fruit tree’s buds, making it harder for the tree to produce fruit next spring.

But, if you’re proactive, protecting young fruit trees in the winter is possible. Before temperatures drop, do this:

  1. Wrap the tree’s trunk with a plastic tree guard or any other opaque protective tree wrap you find at your garden store. This will protect the tree from sun scald.
  2. Use a frost shield for fruit trees, also known as an anti-transparent. Spraying fruit tree canopies with frost shield coats the tree with a protective film that helps minimize moisture loss.

How To Protect Newly Planted Shrubs From Frost

Oftentimes we plant shrubs to create a privacy screen around our yards. But of course, those shrubs need to be in good health to do their job!

Protect shrubs against winter injury by taking these few steps in the fall:

  1. Thoroughly water your shrubs all the way up until the ground freezes. Here’s how much water newly planted trees and shrubs need.
  2. Seal in moisture by covering your shrub’s bed in a 2-to-4-inch layer of mulch.
  3. Wrap shrubs in loose material like burlap to shield them from harsh wind. Here are two ways to wrap your shrubs before winter.

What Temperature To Cover Plants

Most plants are just fine as long as the temperature is 30 degrees F or higher. Freeze damage can happen when the temperature drops down to the mid-to-low-twenties, and plants are definitely at risk when temps sink under 20 degrees.

To be safe, protect your plants with tree guards or burlap before the temperature is consistently below 30 degrees.

How To Protect Plants From A Late Frost

No trees respond well to a sudden temperature drop, but newly planted trees can really take a hit if mild springtime elements abruptly turn cold. (If you didn’t know, here’s why trees do not appreciate fluctuating temperatures.)

Planning ahead, and having tools like mulch and burlap on hand, can help with the shock of a late spring frost. To protect trees and shrubs from a sudden shift in weather, follow these steps:

  1. Keep an eye on the forecast to track any expected drops in temperature.
  2. The day before a freezing day, thoroughly water your plant.
  3. Mulch to lock in moisture and prevent frost heaving. In a nutshell, frost heaving is when soil thaws and freezes over and over, causing roots to lift up above ground and become exposed to injuring, cold weather. This is a particular problem for young trees during their first couple winters, since their roots are still shallow.
  4. For extra protection, carefully cover the plant with burlap (here’s how!) or a bed sheet if it’s small enough. Be sure to remove that cover first thing the next morning so your plant doesn’t overheat.

When To Remove Tree Wrap

Protective tree wraps aren’t meant to stay on all year. Here’s how you know it’s time to take off tree wrap in spring.

Did your evergreen shrub turn brown in winter? Here’s how to spot and prevent evergreen winter burn.

PRINT OR DOWNLOAD

Sign Up For Free Tree & Landscaping Tips! 

Subscribe to the "The Sapling," the Davey Blog's email newsletter, for the latest tips to keep your outdoor space in tip-top shape throughout the year.

Plus, receive a free instant download of our landscape seasonal checklists when you sign up!

Sign Up Now

Get In Touch With Us!

We pride ourselves at Davey Tree on providing prompt, professional and personalized service from certified arborists that live, work and engage in your community. Contact one of our Davey Tree specialists for your residential, commercial, utility, or environmental needs.

Contact Us

Protecting Newly Planted Trees from Frost & Cold Winter Weather

Trees do so much for you. They beautify your landscape, provide cozy shade, oxygenate the air, and boost home value.

No wonder taking care of them is so important! Trees seem to stand so tall and strong on their own. They are the giants of your landscape. They almost seem invincible.

But just like a new puppy, young or newly planted trees need some special care and attention, too, so they can grow healthy roots and a solid structure.

This is especially true in winter. The coldest season can be tough on all of us, trees included. Harsh conditions like cold winds, bright sun, bitter ice, heavy snow, and frost can pack a punch.

Protecting trees from cold weather starts by following these 4 care tips, so you can extend their lives and maximize the many benefits they bring to your home.

How To Protect Newly Planted Trees From Winter


Why Do The Colder Months Impact Winter Tree Care So Much?

Extreme winter conditions, such as ice storms and winds whipping through at sub-zero temperatures, can weigh branches down, risking breakage.

Snow cover can actually insulate trees from the wind and sub-zero temperatures, so a lack of snow makes them more vulnerable.

Repeated freezing and thawing of soil can also cause soil to expand and contract, causing root damage.

Think sun can’t hurt trees in the winter? Think again. On a cold winter day, the sun can heat up a young tree’s bark, stimulating activity. Then when a cloud comes in and blocks the sun, bark temperature drops rapidly, killing that active tissue.

And all these conditions add to plant dryness. On top of that, dry conditions going into winter can make tree tissue more susceptible to cold damage, especially on evergreens.

Mother Nature certainly doesn’t hold anything back during this season. For adequate winter tree protection, follow these 4 important tips.

  1. Watering. Newly planted trees don’t have a root system that’s well established enough to reach the water that is deep in the soil during winter. But just like people, trees need hydration, too. Water your trees’ roots adequately before the ground freezes in October and through mid-November, so your tree is full before winter hits. During a mild winter, you can add a few waterings, particularly if you’re seeing any browning on your evergreens.
  2. Mulching. Mulch acts as an insulator to keep soil temperatures higher, which is one way to keep trees warm in the winter. It also helps prevent cold air from penetrating the root zone of newly planted trees to reduce fall root growth or kill newly formed roots. Place a 4-inch layer of mulch around your tree’s base, spreading it out at least 2 feet from the trunk. Mulch protects your tree’s soil from frost and helps retain water so your tree’s root system receives adequate moisture. Remember not to let the mulch touch your tree’s trunk.
  3. Wrapping. Newly planted or young trees, as well as trees with thinner bark, can benefit from a little winter tree protection. This is because of the possibility of sunscald, which is when the sun heats up the bark for a short period of time, but then leaves it cracked and dry when clouds return.
    Evergreen needles can suffer as well, soaking up sunlight and then immediately drying out. Wrapping trees in winter can help. But which trees you wrap and how you wrap them varies based on tree type.
  4. Pruning. The dormant season, or the few months of winter when trees grow much slower, is a great time to prune. This practice removes dead, damaged, or dying branches that can steal energy from spring growth and does so at a time that reduces the chances for spreading disease.

How To Protect Newly Planted Fruit Trees From Frost

Young and newly planted trees of all kinds need winter tree protection -- fruit trees included.

Unprotected fruit trees are particularly vulnerable to frost damage, which can take a big toll on your tree’s long-term health. While some fruit trees tolerate cold weather better than others, all could use some fruit tree winter protection.

Fruit Tree Freezing Temperatures

You may be cold in winter whether it’s 45 or 30 degrees Fahrenheit. But for your fruit trees, there’s quite a difference in how they react to various temperature ranges.

Temperatures ranging between 32 and 45 degrees produce hormones that suppress fruit budding. This allows warmer temperatures to tell the tree when it’s time to bud. Temperatures below 32 degrees signal a frost, and tells you it’s a great time to cover your trees.

CONCERNED HOW FROST MAY IMPACT YOUR TREES THIS WINTER? HERE ARE THE BEST WAYS TO PROTECT YOUR TREES FROM FROST.

PRINT OR DOWNLOAD

Topics:

  • Newly Planted Tree Care
  • Tree Protection

Related Blog Posts

Property Maintenance & Landscaping

How to Protect & Repair Trees from Animals: Deer, Rabbits, Squirrels

Your trees are staples in your yard, and while you welcome wildlife, you’d hate to see them destroy these strong, sturdy plants in your yard. Here is how to protect your trees from animals.

Read More

Property Maintenance & Landscaping

How To Protect Cedar Trees In Winter

Get all details here! How to best care for your cedar tree during cold, winter months with these tips on watering (how much and how often), when to wrap and unwrap cedar trees, and how to tell if your cedar tree is dying.

Read More

Back to our Blog

Sign Up For Free Tree & Landscaping Tips! 

Subscribe to the "The Sapling," the Davey Blog's email newsletter, for the latest tips to keep your outdoor space in tip-top shape throughout the year.

Plus, receive a free instant download of our landscape seasonal checklists when you sign up!

Sign Up Now

Get In Touch With Us!

We pride ourselves at Davey Tree on providing prompt, professional and personalized service from certified arborists that live, work and engage in your community. Contact one of our Davey Tree specialists for your residential, commercial, utility, or environmental needs.

Contact Us

Shelter the garden from frost and wind so that it blooms again in the spring

In cold weather, young fruit trees, and sometimes even older plants, can freeze. In Soviet times, the Michurin Research Institute of Horticulture conducted a study and found out that in the winter of 1939 and 1941, at least 200 thousand hectares of orchards were frozen in the country.

Now gardening has advanced a lot, but the frosts are still severe. It is even more difficult to cope with wintering if hares or goats enter the garden, happily nibbling the bark from the trunks. In order for the garden to bloom in spring, it is necessary to protect it from snow, frost and pests.

What to pay attention to

Remember: heat-loving varieties - columnar pears and apple trees - are especially affected. All types of wood, without exception, are adversely affected by a sharp decrease and increase in temperature. The more smoothly cold and warm alternate, the better the tree adapts.

Frosts are doubly dangerous for the garden in regions where winters have little snow. A good snow cover more or less protects the root system, and if it is not there, you need to take care of the shelter.

Increase the winter hardiness of plants before the cold weather: make an autumn pruning, feed the trees with phosphorus-potassium fertilizers and make a good watering, and then take care of special shelters.

Shelter No. 1: against rodents

To protect against rodents, tie up the trunks with PVC film, cover with roofing tar paper, spruce branches. If there are hares, moose in the region, or there is a risk that the trees will want to devour, for example, neighboring goats, then you need to close the bark with spruce branches. Moreover, you need to cover the forks of skeletal branches, the crowns of young trees - all this is very living creatures.

Winter is cold and lack of greenery, but this does not mean that pests have stopped doing their job. It is necessary to equip traps for a dangerous bear - dig a hole half a meter deep, put warm manure in it, and then cover it with earth and mark the place with pegs. When severe frosts strike, they dig a hole and the bears gathered in it die.

Shelter #2: from frost

What happens to the bark in freezing temperatures? On the south side, the trunk heats up, and on the north it is covered with frost. On frosty nights, tree sap crystallizes (freezes) and breaks wood cells. As a result, the gardener sees frost holes in the morning. But not only they are dangerous, but also the general freezing of wood.

It is necessary to shelter from the cold not only the trunk, but also the soil near it (roots, shoots), crown, especially in very young trees. What can be used as a heater:

  • straw, spruce branches (coniferous branches), burlap - for the trunk, branches, crown;
  • compost, manure - to cover the soil around the tree (protection of the roots).

This shelter protects not only from the winter "icy" sun, frost, but also from snowfall and wind.

How to build a shelter:

  1. A "hut" is built around the tree from shackles, wooden slats, boards.
  2. From above, the crown is covered with covering material.
  3. The structure is fixed with twine, wire, ropes.
  4. The root part is closed with spruce branches or peat.

Five ways to shelter trees from frost and cold winds

Be sure to cover young trees that survive the first winter, and vaccinations. For them, you can take agrospan or any other agrofiber that is tied with twine as a shelter.

With the help of wire and agrofibre, you can create comfortable covering structures

Sometimes gardeners make a serious mistake by covering young plantings with snow almost completely. The snow begins to melt, and here it is important to free the trees and seedlings from the snowdrift. If you are even a little late, this guarantees the death of young trees: the trunk will swell, the roots will begin to rot, an ice crust will grow on the seedling and it will freeze out on a cold night.

Shelter #3: Root Mulching

The biggest danger is the deep freezing of the soil. The roots are affected, and with strong temperature fluctuations (multiple thawing and freezing), the damage can be irreparable. Mulching can save the roots: the surface of the earth must be “filled” with a thick layer of mulch.

A substrate is taken as mulch - sawdust, peat, hay with soil. The mixture is laid in several stages:

  1. In late autumn, the substrate is thrown onto the near-trunk area on half of the shovel bayonet.
  2. Complete hilling with the composition is carried out with an increase in the height of the shelter.
  3. A glass of wood ash is added - it protects against pests, fungus, mice.
  4. During the period of frost, the bottom of the bole is mulched.
It is impossible to mulch the base of the trunk before the onset of stable cold weather, otherwise the bark will wet. If tightened with shelter, then the soil, on the contrary, will freeze together with the upper root parts. Therefore, it is important to correctly guess the moment: it is ideal when it is already cold, but real frosts have not hit yet.

The mulch should be immediately covered with fallen snow. Remember: the higher the snowdrift under the tree, the more securely the roots are protected.

Mulching should affect the entire root system, it is absolutely impossible to “rake” anything from the base of the trunk!

Shelter No. 4: from burns

During thaws, uncovered boles and crowns should be sprayed or smeared with a special solution. This will help prevent sunburn on very cold days.

Do not use lime - it can corrode organic matter, especially if the bark is damaged. For whitewashing, take chalk or a special garden acrylic whitewash.

For whitewashing, use chalk mortar or acrylic garden whitewash.

In heavy snowfall, branches of trees and shrubs break under the weight of snow, the same problem occurs during a thaw, when the snow is pressed on the crown, begins to thaw and become heavier. So that the branches do not break, you need to regularly shake off the snow, and even better, tie the branches with ribbons.

How to protect young trees from frost

Content

  • 1 What materials are better than
  • 2 Features of regions
  • 3 Insulation of adult stands
    • 3.1 Preparation
    • 3.2 Warming of the trunk circle
    • 3.3 VETOKS
    • 9002 900 4 Shelter of young trees
    • 5 Warming of seedlings
      • 5.1 How to properly dig in
      • 5.2 Shelter of coniferous species
      • 5.3 Shelter of fruit seedlings
    • 6 Why you need to cover apple trees
    • 7 When and how to cover a young apple tree for the winter
    • 8 Materials for sheltering apple trees for the winter
    • 9 How to cover young apple trees for the winter: technology to winterize apple trees
    • seedlings
    • 11 How to cover an apple tree for the winter, depending on the variety
    • 12 How to cover columnar apple trees
    • 13 What to look for
    • 14 Shelter No. 1: from rodents
    • 15 Shelter No. 2: from frost
    • 16 Shelter No. 3: mulching roots
    • 17 Shelter No. 4: from burns

    Preparing trees for winter is extremely necessary not only in the regions of risky farming, but also in central Russia, even in the south. Small frosts, especially even before the first snow falls, can damage the root system of even an adult plant, and seedlings and young plantings are also at risk.

    Warming of cultivated trees for the winter is an important measure for the protection of horticultural crops. It will allow you to get a rich harvest even after severe frosts.

    Which materials are best

    For shelter from the cold, you can use both natural materials that you can assemble yourself, as well as special synthetic fabrics, canvases. The first are distinguished by an affordable price, the second - by durability, efficiency. In the middle lane, soil and roots are covered with sawdust, spruce branches and withered foliage. To achieve good thermal insulation, it is necessary to lay them in several layers, but in the spring these materials will begin to give useful elements to the soil and will not interfere with active air exchange. Under such a shelter, the soil will not rise, the risk of developing fungus and mold is minimal. However, these materials will not save you from severe colds; without additional strengthening, they will quickly be inflated by the wind, especially in open areas.

    Insulation of young trees with agrofibre is a more common and reliable measure to protect them. Non-woven fabrics pass moisture well, so the greenhouse effect does not occur. At the same time, numerous small pores do not allow air to quickly seep through the layers, even a strong wind is not afraid of such a shelter. Agrofibres can be used for several seasons. Inexpensive options can be spoiled by rodents and pests, and over time they will also become thinner. Dense products with rubber impregnation should be avoided, moisture will definitely accumulate under such products.

    Materials such as matting and felt are distinguished among the insulation materials. They have the best thermal insulation characteristics, however, are the least durable. Just one layer will be enough to protect the roots and even the trunk from severe frosts. It is not difficult to use such shelters correctly, their price is not too high. But after one season, you will have to buy a heater again.

    Features of the regions

    No matter how reliable thermal insulation is, if the roots or trunk are already damaged by cold weather, and the soil has had time to freeze, the tree may die. Therefore, it is very important to choose the right time for processing plantings. It depends on the climatic conditions in the region.

    In the southern strip, it is enough to mulch the soil in time and cover the trunk from pests. You can do this until the end of November. Additional protection will be required only for those seedlings that were planted late. Be sure to cover capricious varieties, tropical plants that must acclimatize for several years.

    In the Moscow region, the middle zone, the Volga region, it is necessary to complete all measures for the preparation of plantings before the beginning of November. In the middle of the month, at night, the temperature already drops below zero, but snow falls extremely rarely during this period. You can only use improvised simple means if the forecast for the winter is not too frightening. Processing is carried out in several stages:

    • cutting;
    • mulching;
    • trunk insulation;
    • covering the roots with sawdust or spruce branches;
    • snow pouring.

    In the Volga region, due to strong winds and high humidity, it is recommended to use agrofibre, matting or felt for additional protection, but this is not necessary if there is enough snow for reliable shelter.

    In the northern regions, it is necessary to insulate the entire tree, including large branches, before the end of October. The first layer of root cover must be reinforced with heavy spruce branches or not too thick boards. Additionally, snow is raked into the root circle. The trunk is insulated significantly, in several layers.

    Growers should be aware that early cover can damage the plant, especially in warm regions. Therefore, it is important to adhere to standard deadlines. For example, you need to determine the shelter time of an apple tree by the average daily temperature. Preparations begin when daytime and nighttime totals approach a stable 10 degrees. Up to zero, the plants will be able to survive the cold snap, but by this time they need to be completely insulated. For example, in the Moscow region this is the period from the end of October to the middle of November, in the Urals from the beginning of October to the beginning of November, in Krasnodar - the second half of November and the beginning of December, and in the Far East from the first days of October to the middle of the month.

    Warming of adult plantations

    Mature, large trees need protection, if the prognosis is unfavorable, they have suffered diseases in the current year. A small shelter is always desirable, as this will allow you not to lose the achieved volume of the crop even under the most unfavorable conditions in the next period. And if it is difficult to damage adult plants with winter frosts, then the first cold weather without snow, late spring sub-zero temperatures are even more dangerous.

    Preparation

    Preparation of adult fruit trees for the winter should begin with pre-treatment. First of all, you need to harvest the entire crop, be sure to dispose of all rotten, spoiled fruits. Fallen leaves need to be raked up. They can become a source of soil contamination and new shoots in the spring. You also need to take care of pests. An effective measure for the prevention of infection will be the treatment of:

    • with a solution of copper sulphate;
    • lime concentrate;
    • with a weak solution of potassium permanganate.

    If the insulation material is not used for the first time, after storage it must be dried and treated with the same composition to prevent contamination. To prevent rodents from penetrating into the shelter and to the roots, you can use such a simple tool as coffee grounds. The pungent smell repels even harmful slugs and snails, large animals. All of them come to the gardens in search of food in winter. Whitewashing with a special compound or lime will also make it difficult for rodents to access the bark that is tasty for them. Enemies of wood are small insects, ants will not be able to penetrate the cracks and harm the plant. In addition, such a measure will avoid cracking the rough bark of an adult trunk due to temperature changes.

    Insulation of the trunk circle

    Mature garden trees need shelter around the trunk circle. Developed roots can be damaged by frost, so be sure to mulch the ground. Pre-treat the soil with a weak solution of fungicide. Distinguish between permanent and dynamic mulch Permanent also performs a decorative function, but in cold regions it is recommended to first perform dynamic processing, for which they are suitable:

    I lay manure and ready-made compost in a layer no thicker than 6 centimeters. Otherwise, rotting may begin. All other materials can be laid in a layer up to 10 centimeters. Seedlings are processed in the same way.

    Permanent mulch is covering the ground with durable materials with good thermal insulation performance. For example, gravel with different sizes of fractions, coarse sand, natural stone chips. If it is desirable to cover the dynamic mulch with spruce branches or agrofibre, then the constant one no longer needs further strengthening. The only exception is the northern regions, where layering is needed to protect against severe frosts.

    Insulation of the trunk and branches

    Mature plants need to be completely insulated only in the northern regions. If the temperatures do not fall below minus 30 degrees Celsius, a strong trunk with a thick and rough bark will cope with the load on its own. Such wooden insulation is already enough. However, if the plant was infected, weakened, recently transplanted, it makes sense to still cover the trunk additionally, but then remove all materials a little earlier to ensure timely awakening in the spring.

    Since it is no longer possible to build a protective frame around the trunk due to the size of the plant, plastic materials and canvases must be used. For example, synthetic or natural pipe insulation is a good choice. It will protect both from the cold and from rodents, even from wild hares. Such materials are used in the installation of the pipeline, since they are durable, they can be used in the garden for up to ten years. If the material is sold in the form of large rolls, it can not be cut into strips, but wrapped entirely around the trunk. Outside, secure with twine or ordinary tape. In the same way, handle large branches.

    Shelter for young trees

    Young plants must be protected from frost, because their roots are not yet too strong, and the trunk is not yet covered with a thick layer of perennial bark. Such an annual treatment will allow you to get the first harvest a few years earlier. This is especially necessary when planting trees that are nonspecific for such a region, heat-loving. Often, gardeners are faced with the fact that young plantings "rest" and do not bloom. Often this is due to hypothermia. A reliable shelter will allow you to quickly form a crown and a mass of fruitful branches.

    A good option is to insulate with thick tights. It is desirable that these be products with natural fibers. Such protection can, in general, not be removed from the trunk and branches during the first few years. Synthetics do not pass air and moisture well, so it is better not to use it. Insulated models are best suited. The winding and fastening technology is simple, you can master it from one of the many videos.

    The first stage of processing is the insulation of the near-stem circle and its mulching. Then the whole tree is wrapped with a layer of the selected material or tights. If there are thin and flexible branches, they can be pressed against the trunk. Everything is strengthened and tied with twine or tape. If necessary, they are additionally covered with spruce branches, slightly going onto the trunk itself. After the snow falls, a thick layer is thrown. In the spring, it will become an additional source of moisture for the warming soil.

    Warming of seedlings

    It is not advised to root seedlings in winter if they are not frost-resistant varieties. Otherwise, it is better to postpone the procedure until spring. If a young seedling is already dug up, a little stronger, they cover it according to the same method as any other young tree, but at the same time they use layering even in a warm climate.

    How to properly dig in

    In the garden, you can make a complete shelter for seedlings that have not been planted. Putting them in a special groove is called digging. Choose a place where water does not accumulate in spring, away from bushes, manure heaps and buildings. They dig a trench with a depth of 40-60 centimeters. It is better to do it in the direction from west to east. The northern slope is dug gently, and the southern one with a slope of 50-60 degrees.

    Seedlings are pre-examined, soaked in water with an antiseptic solution. Twelve hours is enough to saturate them with moisture and kill all pests. Roots are laid in a trench to the north, crowns to the south. The optimal distance between the trunks is 30 centimeters. Seedlings should be covered with soil gradually. First, they fill the voids between the trunks and under them, slightly moisten, then fill the north side near the roots, spill it again with water, after which they perform a complete shelter. When the trench is completely buried, it must be lightly tamped without much effort. From above, the soil is covered with a mixture of peat and sawdust, covered with agrofiber. The branches themselves can be additionally protected with spruce branches or straw.

    Shelter for coniferous species

    Young fir trees are sensitive not only to frost, but also to snow load. Therefore, shelter in the garden should begin with tying the branches. They are gently pressed against the trunk and tied with twine without much tension. The trunk circle is mulched and covered, the trunk itself is covered with the selected material. If possible, you can build a triangular frame around the seedling, filling the interior with bags of straw. This is a reliable protection of the youngest trees from rodents and from severe frosts.

    It is permissible to cover conifers with polyethylene, various multi-year films. In this case, it is necessary to build a frame around the trunk. Directly on the branches, such materials are not fixed, since ripening is inevitable, and later rotting of the needles.

    Shelter for fruit seedlings

    If the seedlings have already been planted, do not dig them into the trench, it is necessary to strengthen the protection against cold and pests. The trunk and branches are tightly wrapped with synthetic agrofibre in several layers. Additionally, a layer of felt can be laid between the fabric and the bark. You need to close the entire height, all small branches, otherwise they will not be able to overwinter. The trunk circle must be covered with spruce branches or straw, mulching alone is not enough.

    It is advisable to wrap a young fruit tree seedling with a dense layer of protection from wind and cold air. It can be both a film and roofing material. This layer of insulation must be removed at the onset of the first thaw.

    Covering trees is a simple procedure that can be done during the long month before the first frost. Don't rely on snow cover alone. Even coniferous and frost-resistant species winter much better in shelter. Multi-layer protection avoids the penetration of various rodents to the trunk and young branches, which can lead to the death of plantings. The use of natural materials will reduce costs, and the use of special agrofibre will provide reliable thermal insulation even in the most severe climate.

    Orchard young apple trees require special care and protection for the winter. Fruit trees can suffer for various reasons. How to cover a young apple tree for the winter, so that in the spring, returning to the garden, you do not have to find dead trees that cannot produce a crop.

    Why you need to cover apple trees

    Many beginner gardeners believe that apple trees need to be covered solely to protect them from frost. But it is not so. Of course, young apple trees can freeze during severe frosts, but they are threatened not only by this. The main reason why such a shelter is needed is protection from rodents, which very often feast on the succulent bark of seedlings.

    Insulating the trunk will help protect the bark from biting wind that can dry it out. The spring sun can also harm the apple bark, it can cause burns. The quality of the crop and the fruitful period depend on how competently the measures for sheltering the apple tree for the winter are carried out. A young apple tree, deprived of shelter, may die, its skeletal branches will freeze, and the root system may freeze. This is especially true for apple trees grown in Siberia.

    If the bark of an apple tree is damaged, it will not be able to develop normally and grow in the spring. There will be no good harvest. Bark that has lost its integrity is prone to disease, which can lead to the death of the tree. Protecting the bark by covering it for the winter is an important task for a gardener who takes care of his garden.

    When and how to cover a young apple tree for the winter

    It is very important to correctly determine the timing of sheltering apple trees for the winter. The health and life of fruit trees depends on this. If you cover apple trees for the winter too early, young shoots will begin to grow too early. A first-year apple tree warmed too early will definitely start to grow. This cannot be allowed, because the plant will die. It is recommended to take measures to warm the apple tree when the sap flow stops completely, and a stable cold sets in outside with an air temperature of about -10 degrees. Before sheltering apple trees for the winter, you need to clean the boles and branches from the old bark, which exfoliates, and then whitewash with lime mortar.

    Materials for covering apple trees for the winter

    How to cover apple trees? To cover the root neck, materials that allow air to pass through are suitable. You can take an ordinary old stocking. Burlap, old rags, sugar bags, from which you must first remove the film, are suitable to protect the tree trunk. Regular newspapers can be used. Together with the trunk, it is necessary to cover the lower branches. Agrofibre is an excellent material for warming apple trees, but expensive. It provides protection of trees from frosts and from rodents. Agrofibre is easy to buy.

    In the old days, fruit trees were protected with straw, corn stalks, reeds, coniferous tree branches. And now these materials can be used to shelter apple trees. You need to be careful with the reeds, mice often start up in them. It will not be superfluous to spread poison around the apple tree if reeds are chosen as a heater.

    Many gardeners use ordinary plastic bottles to cover their apple trees. This material is accessible to everyone. They reliably cover the basal neck and trunk, and also perform the function of scaring away, since they make noise with every breath of wind.

    The most unusual cover material is toilet paper. You just need to choose the cheapest and coarsest varieties of it. The basal neck should be wrapped in several layers with toilet paper. It is necessary to capture the stem and lower branches. It will take at least three layers, the more the better. To prevent the paper from being torn off by the wind, it is fixed with twine.

    Foamed polyethylene for thermal insulation of pipes will help to insulate the apple tree for the winter. To do this, it is cut along the seam and put on a tree. It can be fixed with tape or twine to better hold. With such a heater, the tree will not be cold, rodents will not reach the trunk. And such a shelter looks aesthetically pleasing. The cost of such material is very low, and it can be used repeatedly.

    Film or roofing material can be used, but they cause bracing. They are airtight, if such material is not removed in a timely manner in the spring, wait for the greenhouse effect, the trunk will burn, a fungus will appear on the tree.

    How to cover young apple trees for the winter: technology

    How to cover apple trees? You can use different methods to cover trees. They depend on the variety and age of the trees. Young trees need careful and careful shelter. First you need to cover the near-stem circle with insulating material, then cover it with snow. To keep the snow better near the tree, you can throw in tops or small brushwood.

    After the appearance of the first snow cover, experienced gardeners advise using it to cover the crown of the apple tree. Snow is taken from paths where there are no plants. During the winter, it is necessary to monitor the changes in the weather, the apple tree should always remain under the snow. Uncut shoots may remain open. Covering material is removed only when all the snow has melted. The exception is plastic film or roofing material. These materials are removed at the first thaw.

    To check how the apple tree survived the winter, you need to cut off the tip of the branch and look at the cut. The branch is alive if there is white tissue in the section. When acquiring a beige or brown fabric, you can definitely say that the branch has died. With the death of one or several branches, one cannot speak of the death of the entire tree.

    How to insulate apple trees for the winter: we cover seedlings

    Covering apple tree seedlings is distinguished by its specifics. With the wrong shelter, the tree can simply die. If apple tree seedlings are planted for the winter, they are covered according to the same principle as young trees, but the trunk and crown will require shelter. Before winter, only frost-resistant varieties of apple trees can be planted; if you plan to plant seedlings of other varieties, it is recommended to postpone planting until spring. How to keep seedlings in winter until spring? For this, two methods are used.

    1. The first way. You need to choose a dry, calm place on the site. Dig a groove about 50 cm deep, about 35 cm wide. Dip apple seedlings with roots in a clay mash, then place in a groove. Sprinkle the roots with peat with humus, cover with a layer of agrofiber and dry spruce branches on top. In winter, you need to make sure that the groove is completely covered with a layer of snow. In the spring, when the sun begins to bake, it is necessary to start removing the protection, especially for snow, so that thin twigs are not damaged under its weight. The protection should be removed gradually, being careful not to return frosts.
    2. The second way. Choose a dry place, prepare the soil. Add sand to loamy soil, peat or humus to sandy soil. Dig carefully. Dig a groove from west to east. Carefully fold the seedlings into the groove, making sure that the slope is towards the south, this will provide protection from sunburn. Sprinkle with earth. Water the soil, spread the means to repel rodents around the groove. It can be branches of wild rose, blackberry. In the spring, you need to make sure that there is not a lot of snow around the groove, otherwise the seedlings will get wet. Excess snow at the end of winter is removed as needed.

    How to cover an apple tree for the winter, depending on the variety

    How to cover apple trees of different varieties? The method of shelter to some extent depends on the variety of the apple tree and on its characteristics. In general, the shelter technology is similar. When choosing trees for planting, it is important to consider that some varieties are frost-resistant, but do not tolerate spring thaws. It also takes into account in which region of Russia it is planned to plant apple trees, as well as for which region the variety was bred. Frost-resistant varieties are intended for the Siberian and northern regions. They do not tolerate sudden warming, and then the return of cold weather.

    Varieties bred for the European part of Russia do not tolerate winter well, but sudden warming in winter does not frighten them. When sheltering apple trees, you need to approach taking into account the characteristics of each variety. Some need to pay special attention to the state during periods of thaw, others only during times of low temperatures.

    How to cover columnar apple trees

    Columnar apple tree is a young variety of apple trees that is becoming more and more popular every year. It is no coincidence that the fruit tree received this name, its appearance resembles a column. The tree has practically no side branches, and the fruits are located along the trunk. A distinctive feature of this apple tree is dwarf growth.

    How to insulate a dwarf apple tree? Dwarf apple trees are prone to freezing. After all, near the ground frosts are more severe than at altitude. Special attention should be paid to apple trees of this variety. In such apple trees, the apical bud often suffers. A kidney affected by frost gives several branches that turn into independent trunks. The appearance of the apple tree is broken. To prevent this, you need to cover the crown. Use a film or rags, putting on a covering material from above. It is necessary to cover with a layer of snow, preparing a columnar seedling of an apple tree for wintering.

    To make the apple tree resistant to gusts of wind, it is recommended to tie a support to the tree. To protect young trees, you need to cover the area near the roots, since the root system can freeze. You can use straw, shavings, sawdust, spruce branches and other materials. They wrap the trunk with improvised materials: burlap, paper, old rags, nylon stockings, this will scare away rodents. The higher part is wrapped with toilet paper or newspapers. Make several layers, strengthening with twine.

    With properly carried out measures to cover apple trees, trees will feel good throughout the winter, they will not die or freeze under covering materials and under a snow coat. In autumn, they will be able to please with delicious bulk apples.

    In cold weather, young fruit trees, and sometimes older plants, can freeze. In Soviet times, the Michurin Research Institute of Horticulture conducted a study and found out that in the winter of 1939 and 1941, at least 200 thousand hectares of orchards were frozen in the country.

    Horticulture has now made serious progress, but the frosts are still severe. It is even more difficult to cope with wintering if hares or goats enter the garden, happily nibbling the bark from the trunks. In order for the garden to bloom in spring, it is necessary to protect it from snow, frost and pests.

    What to pay attention to

    Remember: heat-loving varieties - columnar pears and apple trees - are especially affected. All types of wood, without exception, are adversely affected by a sharp decrease and increase in temperature. The more smoothly cold and warm alternate, the better the tree adapts.

    Frosts are doubly dangerous for the garden in regions where winters have little snow. A good snow cover more or less protects the root system, and if it is not there, you need to take care of the shelter.

    Increase the winter hardiness of plants before the cold weather: make an autumn pruning, feed the trees with phosphorus-potassium fertilizers and make a good watering, and then take care of special shelters.

    Shelter No. 1: from rodents

    To protect against rodents, tie up the trunks with PVC film, cover with roofing tar paper, spruce branches. If there are hares, moose in the region, or there is a risk that the trees will want to devour, for example, neighboring goats, then you need to close the bark with spruce branches. Moreover, you need to cover the forks of skeletal branches, the crowns of young trees - all this is very living creatures.

    Winter is cold and lack of greenery, but this does not mean that pests have stopped doing their job. It is necessary to equip traps for a dangerous bear - dig a hole half a meter deep, put warm manure in it, and then cover it with earth and mark the place with pegs. When severe frosts strike, they dig a hole and the bears gathered in it die.

    Shelter No. 2: from frost

    What happens to the bark in sub-zero temperatures? On the south side, the trunk heats up, and on the north it is covered with frost. On frosty nights, tree sap crystallizes (freezes) and breaks wood cells. As a result, the gardener sees frost holes in the morning. But not only they are dangerous, but also the general freezing of wood.

    It is necessary to shelter from the cold not only the trunk, but also the soil near it (roots, shoots), crown, especially in very young trees. What can be used as a heater:

    • straw, spruce branches (coniferous branches), burlap - for the trunk, branches, crown;
    • compost, manure - to cover the soil around the tree (protection of the roots).

    This shelter protects not only from the winter "icy" sun, frost, but also from snowfall and wind.

    How to make a shelter:

    1. A “hut” is built around the tree from shackles, wooden slats, planks.
    2. From above, the crown is covered with covering material.
    3. The structure is fixed with twine, wire, ropes.
    4. The root part is closed with spruce branches or peat.

    Be sure to cover young trees that survive the first winter and vaccinations. For them, you can take agrospan or any other agrofiber that is tied with twine as a shelter.

    Sometimes gardeners make a serious mistake, covering young plantings with snow almost “with their heads”. The snow begins to melt, and here it is important to free the trees and seedlings from the snowdrift. If you are even a little late, this guarantees the death of young trees: the trunk will swell, the roots will begin to rot, an ice crust will grow on the seedling and it will freeze out on a cold night.

    Shelter #3: Root Mulching

    The biggest danger is the freezing of the soil to a great depth. The roots are affected, and with strong temperature fluctuations (multiple thawing and freezing), the damage can be irreparable. Mulching can save the roots: the surface of the earth must be “filled” with a thick layer of mulch.

    The substrate is taken as mulch - sawdust, peat, hay with soil. The mixture is laid in several stages:

    1. In late autumn, the substrate is thrown onto the near-trunk area on half of the shovel bayonet.
    2. Complete hilling with the composition is carried out with an increase in the height of the shelter.
    3. A glass of wood ash is added - it protects against pests, fungus, mice.
    4. During the period of frost, the bottom of the bole is mulched.

    It is impossible to mulch the base of the trunk before the onset of stable cold weather, otherwise the bark will wet. If tightened with shelter, then the soil, on the contrary, will freeze together with the upper root parts. Therefore, it is important to correctly guess the moment: it is ideal when it is already cold, but real frosts have not hit yet.

    The mulch should be immediately covered with fallen snow.


    Learn more