Tree Irrigation 101: How to Properly Water a Tree

There is a reason that landscapers create circles around the base of a tree, whether young or old. It has to do with tree irrigation.

A round irrigation system complements the way a tree’s roots grow, which is down and out. However, it’s not as simple as making a circle. You need to think about the age, type, and maintenance level of the tree to determine the best way to irrigate it.

Trees are complicated, but if you maintain them correctly from their planting, then they’ll outlive all of us. This tree has lived in Paris from the 1600s. It’s over 400 years old and received quality care, which has kept it alive and healthy all of these years.

Want to make your trees last that long? Read our irrigation tips below.

Water Deep

A tree needs water in its roots, which you don’t have 100 percent control over. You want to get water as deep as you can, then let the top roots do the rest.

Try to design your irrigation so the water goes at least a foot and a half deep into the ground. Two feet is even better. We recommend getting help from a professional for this process since you’ll be dealing with complex roots.

Water Often

Newer trees need a significant amount of water on a regular basis, just as an infant needs small but constant feeding.

When you water a new tree, you want to make sure the ring around the tree gets soaked. This process ensures the root ball will get the water it needs to grow outwards and take root.

Don’t Over Water

As much as new trees need enough water, they can be overwatered. Avoid flooding the new root ball with water causing it to swim in the wet soil.

When you water, stop as soon as you see the whole root area circle saturated. Wait a few hours and check to make sure it’s draining. If it isn’t, see if you can aerate or add compost to help it drain.

Account for Growth

As your tree gets bigger, the root system also grows. Think about how a tree naturally receives water.

A minimal amount filters through the leaves while the rest runs down the trunk and outwards. How can you help imitate this natural effect?

Your water irrigation ring will need to get bigger as your tree grows. Move it outward and increase the diameter so you’re watering the roots as they spread.

Check the Species

Some trees need more water than others, such as almond trees. You can check your tree’s thirst level online or by calling a local tree company. Using mulch and improving your soil can also help you to minimize your water usage.

If you live in an area that is prone to drought, then it’s important to choose a tree that will do well in that type of environment. A few of these types of trees include acacia saligna, African sumac, and Australian bottle.

Also, you want to group plants that naturally grow together and use about the same amount of water instead of pairing a plant that does not need much water with one that needs to be watered daily.

Ask for Help with Tree Irrigation

If you want to nurture a baby tree to give it the possibility of living four hundred years, we recommend getting professional help with your tree irrigation.

Not only will a professional know what irrigation system you need, but they can check your tree for illness or disease, giving you the benefit of their experience and knowledge. Professionals will also have location-specific tips, based on your climate, to help you choose the right tree and recommend when it needs to be trimmed as well.

You can find out a lot by doing your homework on the internet, however, only a professional can tell you the exact root pattern of your tree. Give that tree a chance and let Tree Barber’s Certified Arborist help.

Recognized as a top tree care company, Tree Barber Enterprises serves thousands of residential and business customers in North County San Diego. Our Certified Arborist and Certified Tree Workers are highly skilled and extensively trained in the latest arboriculture techniques, which enables us to perform our tasks quickly, safely and economically.