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Lawn Care Blog

Signs of Heat Stress in Shrubs & Trees & How To Help Them!

plant stressAs temperatures soar into the 90's in Ohio, trees and shrubs in Cleveland and Columbus are beginning to show signs of stress.  This stress can have quite a negative impact on the plant, and in some cases kill it.

Identifying Stressed Plants

There are many ways that you can identify plants going into heat stress.  If you catch the early signs that a plant can be in trouble, you'll have time to correct the situation.  If you let it go, heat stress can make the plant vulnerable to disease, insects and other problems.  Often, if gone untreated, heat stress can kill newly planted shrubs and trees.

Here's some early warning signs that the plant may be in trouble:

  • Yellowing of the Interior Leaves or Needles;
  • Dropping of the Leaves;
  • Browning or Crunchy Leaves;
  • Wilting Leaves or Dying Branches.

In any of these cases, action must be taken to help protect the plant from further damage.

How to Help Plants Suffering from Heat Stress

Soil condition becomes a big factor in helping a plant recover from heat stress.  Often in Ohio, trees & shrubs are planted in hard clay conditions, causing water to run off when it rains.  Follow these tips to help your plants recover:

  1. Install a Soaker Hose or Drip Irrigation - This allows for a steady dripping of water, preventing run water run off.  
  2. Cycle and Soak - Water in 15 minute sections, cycling through all your plant areas multiple times.  This allows for adequate moisture absorption.
  3. Mulch Around the Plant - Mulch can help the plant retain needed moisture when watering.  Also, the microbials in the mulch serve as a natural fertilizer for the plant.

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