Tree Care Tips: March
- March is a good month for fertilizing all trees.
- Now is prime time for pruning most evergreen trees and shrubs.
- This is the last chance to prune citrus and ficus and other sun-sensitive trees. Be careful. If you wait too long, new foliage will not have time to fill in before sun damage occurs. As a rule, any area of bark exposed to direct sun for 3 or 4 hours needs to be protected with shade cloth or tree wrap to prevent sunscald. (For more information on sun protection, see the article First Aid for Sunburned Plants.)
- There are two general rules for pruning flowering trees and shrubs: For plants that produce blooms on old wood or last season’s growth, prune as soon as possible after the bloom ends. For flowering plants that produce blooms on new wood or this season’s growth, prune in late winter or early spring.
- It’s also a good time to apply a 2-3 inch layer of mulch around the base of trees and shrubs. This relatively inexpensive soil amendment does more to improve growing conditions around desert plants than any other treatment including fertilization. It reduces soil temperatures, runoff and evaporation, encourages nitrogen cycling and improves soil microbiology. Go to our product listings to see how you can have a free load of mulch delivered to you.