Experts and BHG readers answer.
Any tips on how to give a newly planted tree the best care possible?
Raising a tree is not as complicated (or expensive) as raising a child, but it does require similar attention to needs. Depending on the type of tree, you might wrap the tender, young trunk to prevent sunscald and protect it from damage in winter. Water your newly planted tree deeply at least once a week through the first growing season. More is better if the summer turns hot and dry. A layer of mulch around your tree saves water, decreases stress, and keeps the grass from com-peting with the tree for nutrients. The ring of mulch also keeps you and your lawn mower away from the trunk and reduces nicks in the bark, which allow insects and disease to get in. Keep the mulch away from the trunk to prevent rodents from hiding in it and gnawing the tree bark. New trees need little or no fertilizer until they have become established for a season or two.