Tips for Bringing Shade Trees to Life in your Texas Neighborhood

Tips for Bringing Shade Trees to Life in your Texas Neighborhood

October 14, 2021

Planting shade trees in Texas is both practical and poetic. They shelter you from the sometimes sweltering Texas sun and give you a lovely spot to spend a summer afternoon lounging with a book in one hand and a glass of sweet tea in the other. At Ben & Annie’s Trees for Tomorrow, we’ve put together some tips for you to take on this next project.

Native Shade Trees for Texas

It’s important to remember that not all shade trees will thrive in your state, so try leaning more toward planting native shade trees in your neighborhood to help ensure that they live a longer and healthier life in an area that will naturally provide for them. 

The Best Time to Plant Shade Trees

The best time to plant trees is often debated, but it always comes down to two options: early fall or spring. If you live in a state where early frost is a possibility, you’d want to wait for spring to ensure that the frost doesn’t hurt your tree’s root growth. In Texas, however, it’s normally best to use the early fall season to get your planting in. This is because tree roots grow well in cooler soil, and by the time winter arrives, your trees will already have a good amount of root growth, thus preparing them even more for when spring rolls around. 

TIps for Planting

Once you’ve found the right place to plant your tree, you’ll need to make sure the hole is two or three times wider than the tree’s root ball and almost as deep as it, leaving about one inch of space at the top. When you take the tree out of the pot, make sure you carefully place the pot on it’s side and rotate the pot to loosen the soil so the tree easily comes out without damaging it. Use a knife to cut the root ball or shake out the roots a bit so that they are pointing straight out when you place them in the hole. Then fill it in with good soil, and add a little mulch to the very top to minimize weed growth.

Correct Way to Water

If you water the tree too much, you might drown the roots or cause tree rot, so make sure you water a few inches off of the trunk to help the roots continue to grow by reaching out for the moisture in the soil. 

Take into account the amount of natural rainfall that your area is getting, and plan accordingly on how often you need to water the trees. Typically, you will need to water them every three to four days in their first summer, and it’s best to water them at night so the water can be soaked up by the tree before the sun rises. 

Say No to Fertilizer 

For the first year of growth, you won’t need to use fertilizer on your trees. Fertilizer will only make the tree use its stored carbohydrates to grow instead of using them to create the natural defensive aspects the tree will need to fight off infection and stress.

Use Support When Necessary

Typically, smaller trees don’t actually need stakes to stay upright, but if the tree is top-heavy or if you are replanting a larger tree in a different location, you’ll want to use stakes to ensure the tree will take hold in the soil and grow on its own from there.

Our goal has always been to encourage others to grow a better future for themselves, their families and the planet, and this is one way to do that while also planting something that will bring both beauty and practical benefits to any neighborhood or area. If you have any questions or want to know more about becoming a partner, don’t hesitate to contact us online.