Tree care programs are the health care plans of the plant world. They are designed to help you monitor and care for your plants and treat problems that arise.
You can even design your own tree and shrub care program to take care of the plants yourself, with minimal help from a care specialist. Taking care of your trees and plants will save you money in replacement costs and give you a better looking landscape.
The benefits of having a care program for trees and shrubs include catching infestations early and identifying diseases while they are treatable and before they do too much damage. For example, a caterpillar infestation can cause defoliation, if you do not deal with it with quickly. Additionally, well cared for plants are more resistant to disease.
Proper monitoring can ensure that weak branches are removed before they fall and damage something. Proper care and pruning of branches ensures abundant flowering and a thicker, fuller look in evergreens.
Most tree care programs are developed and administered by specialized companies. You can also arrange a program through an arborist or a master gardener. Comprehensive programs cover all costs related to monitoring your landscape plants and treating any problems or providing specific care. Other programs provide monitoring services and then charge separately for treatments.
Another approach to a tree care program is to develop and follow one yourself. It may cost a little money up front, if you consult with a master gardener or an arborist.
In some locations, the agricultural extension office may have a horticulturist who can answer your questions at no charge. The key is to figure out a care program that you can do yourself, or that you can carry out mostly on your own, with back up help from professionals when needed.
If you develop your own plan, have a regular schedule for inspection of trees, shrubs, and other plants, and a regular schedule of care and maintenance. To learn how to properly prune trees and shrubs, take a class or pay for a session with a professional. Paying for a two or three hour lesson in pruning can save you hundreds of dollars in having to pay a yard service to do the work. Make sure you know the best times to prune, and do your pruning on a schedule with the rest of the landscape maintenance.
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