Tree fertilizing is often overlooked in most landscapes.  One of the best ways to improve the health of your tree is through tree fertilizing.  All trees need nutrients so that they can mature in a healthy way.  Sometimes it is necessary to add or replace macronutrients and micronutrients that are missing from the soil or have been depleted over time.  Trees require macronutirents in larger quantities than micronutrients.  Some examples of the primary macronutrients that a tree needs to thrive are: nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.  Secondary macronutrients include: calcium, magnesium and sulfur.  If some of these macronutrients are missing from the soil, a tree is more susceptible to disease and insect damage.  The goal of tree fertilizing is to replace the low or missing nutrients in the soil so that the tree can live up to their full potential.  Having a week tree can allow for fungal diseases to overtake the health of the tree.  Insects are also more likely to feed on a weak tree because it is not able to fight them off.  Tree fertilizing can also replace micronutrients.  Micronutrients are as follows: iron, manganese, zinc, copper, boron, chlorine and molybdenum.  Micronutrients are needed by the tree to survive, but are required in less quantities than Macronutrients.

Tree Fertilizing

Determine if tree fertilizing will benefit your tree.

Tree fertilizing will only benefit your tree if you are adding the right types of nutrients to your soil.  The best way to find out what nutrients are low are missing is through a soil test.  A soil test can be performed by taking core plugs from the soil underneath the canopy of the tree.  If you are fertilizing several trees on your property, you should get soil samples from all of the areas.  Most soil samples can be submitted through your local county extension office or local lawn companies.  After you receive your soil analysis, you can review the results to determine what macronutrients and micronutrients are low or high in your soil.  You should select a fertilizer products that specifically replenish’s the low or missing nutrients.  Tree fertilizing can be done through fertilizer spikes, granular products, soil drenches or tree injections.