Saturday, September 30, 2023

Gardener’s Corner: Plant a Tree

By Gerry Hernandez,
UCE Master Gardener

Adding one or more trees to your garden can make a very big difference. Trees are amazing. They can provide shade and fruit, save energy, support wildlife and produce oxygen.

Fall is the best time to plant deciduous trees in our area, so it’s not too soon to start thinking about trees you might want to add. Here are some tips and suggestions for choosing wisely.

First, know where you’re planting. How much sun, shade and wind is there? Will you be planting under or near a power line? What kind of soil do you have?

Make sure you know the maximum height of the tree and how wide it is likely to get. Many homeowners have had to make the decision to remove a tree that was too big for its location.

We love that trees provide shade, but we need them to shade the right places. If you want to keep your house cooler, plant a tree with a wider canopy on the south, southwest or west sides of your home. You’ll want your shade tree to be deciduous, so you can get the benefit of the sun in the winter.

Planting trees to shade your home will have a real pay-off. Shade trees can reduce the need for air conditioning in homes and offices by up to 30 percent. If you don’t have air conditioning, trees can simply keep your home much more livable in the summer.

If you want to plant fruit or nut trees but aren’t sure how to choose the ones best for your site or how to plant and care for them, consult the Colusa County Master Gardener website for advice. Fruit trees can be kept compact through pruning and still yield a lot of fruit.

They do need regular water and fertilizing, as well as plenty of sun, to produce properly.

What kind of tree are you going to plant? The UC Master Gardener Program of Colusa County website has a list of trees that grow well in our area.

Trees for Tomorrow is a joint effort between the City of Colusa Park, Trees and Recreation and the Colusa Rotary. This is for the City of Colusa only. If you are interested in a free tree, contact the city for an application starting Sept. 1, 2023.

For more information on trees, go to:

Source: University of California Agricultural and Natural Resources.

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