Tag Archives: new york tree care

Organic Gardening

Organic gardening is a great way to add to your healthy lifestyle.  Growing your own organic fruits, vegetables and herbs is easy with help from Westchester Tree Life!  We offer organic fertilization to keep your garden happy and healthy.

Organic Fertilizer Westchester Tree Life

About Organic Fertilization 

Non-organic fertilizers contain chemicals such as ammonia or is extracted from minerals.  Introducing manmade chemicals into your soil not only effects your plants, it effects your soil! Organic fertilizers contain only the most natural of ingredients so you can feel at ease about what you’re introducing to your garden.  For organic fertilization in Bedford, White Plains or other areas in Westchester County, New York, call Westchester Tree Life at (914) 238-0069!

Organic Vegetable Gardening

Organic Fertilization Westchester Tree Life

We offer organic fertilization in Westchester County!

Starting your own vegetable garden is a great way to monitor what goes into the veggies you’re eating!  Organic vegetable gardening takes patience, maintenance and care, but the end-result is very gratifying.  Before you start your organic vegetable garden, it’s important that you understand what kind of soil you have and how much sun your garden can provide.  Read Better Homes and Gardens’ Tips for Growing an Organic Vegetable Garden for more tips and tricks here.

Organic-Gardening-Westchest

Call Westchester Tree Life today for organic fertilization!

Blooming Shrubs

Add instant romanticism to your property with fresh blooming shrubs!  These beautiful flowering shrubs will give your Westchester home a pop of beauty and color.  If you need help with shrub care in New York, Westchester Tree Life is here to help!

Forsythia Westchester Tree Life

The bright yellow Forsythia makes for a beautiful addition to any garden or landscape.
via bhg.com

Shrub Care in New York

Westchester Tree Life’s professional team of arborists are here to assist you in plant health care management to ensure that your blooming shrubs maintain their health and beauty all season long!  Westchester Tree Life’s shrub care experts can answer any questions you may have regarding soil, size, watering, and sun exposure.  Read about plant health care management, and view our full service list here.  To request a consultation, fill out our online form here.

The Mountain Laurel

Mountain Laurel Westchester Tree Life

via bhg.com

Adorn your garden with the Mountain Laurel’s pink, white or red blooms!  This beautiful shrub thrives in sun or shade, with moist or well-drained soil.  While the Mountain Laurel is beautiful, some parts of this plants are poisonous, which is something to keep in mind if you have small children.

Do you need help determining if your soil is the proper pH for planting a particular shrub?  Call Westchester Tree Life at (914) 238-0069 for shrub care in New York and Westchester County.

Bridalwreath Spiraea

Bridalwreath Spiraea Westchester Tree Life

via bhg.com

 If your Westchester home tends to have dry soil, perhaps the Bridalwreath Spiraea is for you!  Clusters of white flowers bloom mid to late spring and the leaves turn a beautiful color during fall time.  Planting a Bridalwreath Spiraea in your yard will add instant whimsy.

Heath

Heath Westchester Tree Life

via bhg.com

Ideal for rock gardens and other areas with well-drained and acidic soil, Heath, also known as Heather, adds a bright pop of color.  This tiny shrub blooms anytime from late winter to early spring; flowers can be pink, white or red.  Heather can grow up to ten inches tall and two feet wide.

To request a free consultation from Westchester County’s Westchester Tree Life, fill out our online form here.

Cicadas Arrive in Westchester County

The sound of summer is coming back!  Summer 2016 is going to be the first time in 17 years that cicadas arrive in Westchester County, New York and the rest of the Northeast.  Though these creepy crawlers are alarming-looking up close, they pose no direct threat to humans.  Here are some fun facts about cicadas.

Cicadas Westchester Tree Life

via themarysue.com

Cicadas:  FAQ

A cicada’s mating call can be alarming, especially when amplified from a large quantity.  The cicadas which will emerge this summer are of the genus Magicicada; these bugs are limited to North America’s eastern region, and have many mysteries surrounding their life cycle.

Cicadas Summer 2016 Westchester Tree Life

via dailymail.co.uk

Due to their similar appearance and overwhelming quantities, cicadas are often mistaken for locusts, which they are not related to.  You can differentiate between the two by taking a glance at the insect’s legs!  This graphic from Buzzle shows that while cicadas have short legs and long wings, locusts have short wings but distinctly long legs, which are built for jumping!

Locusts Cicadas Westchester Tree Life

via buzzle.com

Despite their alien-like appearance, cicadas are not harmful to humans, and do not bite or sting, and don’t carry diseases. Cicadas are herbivores whose main goal is to mate and lay eggs!

Female Cicada Laying Eggs

A female cicada lays eggs.

The only threat cicadas pose is to trees.  After the mating ritual is complete, female cicadas excavate a series of Y-shaped “eggnests” in living twigs before laying up to twenty eggs in each nest.  One female cicada can lay as many as 600 eggs!

Mating Rituals

Cicada Westchester Tree Life Tree Care New York

Taken in May of 2004, in Severn, Maryland

When deciphering a female cicada from a male cicada, be sure to look at the size.  Male cicadas are larger, and if you were to view the underbelly of a male and female cicada side by side, you would see this:

Female Cicadas Male Cicadas Westchester Tree Life

Cicadas emerge from the ground during their final molt.  During this time they amass in large groups to sing their mating song, which can be compared to a buzzing or whirring noise.  These loud mating calls, or aggregations can reach up to 100 decibels.

Cicadas Mating Westchester Tree Life

Two cicadas mating after a mating call proves successful.

Interested in more about the Magicicada?  Click here!

Connecting Children with Nature

Screen time has changed how children learn, advance, develop their attention span and connect with nature.  In a world where we are more prone to let Netflix or “educational programming” babysit our children, connecting children with nature is increasingly important. Here are some great ways to get your kids to lay off the screen time, and explore the trees and nature of Westchester County.

Kids Playing Westchester County Trees

Set the Example

Let’s be honest, children learn by example.  Set a positive example for your child by making a point to unplug and stop screen time, and opt for an outdoor activity.  When you have free time, try to spend it outside.  My mother would set aside time each day to weed, water and otherwise tend to her garden; this routine became so normal that I began to appreciate the beauty in the serenity of the process and eventually joined her.

Fun Outdoor Activities

When weaning a child off of screen time, realize that you have to make the new activity just as interesting and exciting.

Westchester County Tree Planting

Planning a day trip to a local tree nursery is a great way to show your child the visual growth of a tree (without a time lapse, of course)!  This hands-on experience will invite your child to connect personally with nature.  If you are so inclined (and have tested the soil, mapped out a proper zone to plant your tree, and have researched the tree’s needs) purchase a tree to plant together!

Westchester County Tree Care

The Magic of a Blooming Garden

Butterfly Garden Westchester Tree Life

Never underestimate the magic of a blooming garden.  As adults we are aware that flowers come in a variety of beautiful shapes and sizes, but to children, this can be amazing.  Visiting a local butterfly garden is a great way to introduce your child to the beauty of nature as well.  The variety of bright, eye-catching plants and excitement of fluttering butterflies is sure to keep your child asking questions about nature.  Take the day trip a step further by shopping for a tree or shrub which will attract butterflies in your area!

View information regarding the American Museum of Natural History’s Butterfly Conservatory (located in New York) here.

Trees Are Cool

You are the coolest person your child knows (Batman does not count).  Set the example by sharing how cool trees are!  If you are going to use screen time, make it educational; watch a Netflix documentary on the rainforest with your child during the next movie night or check out live images of California’s breathtaking redwood forest on Google Earth without leaving your living room.

Westchester Tree Life Family Tree Care

Simply placing a leaf underneath a microscope and letting your child observe will feed their curiosity and imagination.  Once you set the groundwork for a positive relationship with nature, your child will likely nurture that their entire life.

5 Beautiful Trees to Plant This Spring

Spring 2016 may come to Westchester County early this year!  Have you started to think about which trees you would like to plant?  Check out these 5 beautiful trees to plant this spring:

Dogwood Trees

Dogwood Tree Westchester Tree Life

Four seasons series of dogwood tree

Add year-round beauty to your Westchester home with dogwood trees!  These understory trees produce red, pink and white blossoms, offer bold red and purple foliage during fall time and grow red berries during the winter.

Norway Spruce

Norway Spruce Tree Care Westchester County

Full and green all year round, the Norway Spruce is a beautiful addition to your Westchester home!  You may recognize the Norway Spruce as being your Christmas tree!  The Norway Spruce’s dense branching pattern and tolerance of soil variations make it a popular choice.

Blue Spruce Westchester Tree Life

The Blue Spruce is also a beautiful alternative to the Norway Spruce!

English Walnut Tree

English Walnut Tree Westchester Tree Life

Have you considered adding a nut tree to your Westchester property?  The English Walnut Tree is a classic selection which, once fully grown, will offer shade and (hopefully) delicious walnuts!

Crabapple Trees

Crabapple Westchester Tree Life

Add a pop of color to your yard with a Crabapple tree (or two, or three)!  These trees yield beautiful blossoms come springtime and crabapples during fall and winter.  Bright and beautiful, your tree’s crabapples will provide much appreciated sustenance for passing and hungry birds!

Black Locust Trees

Black Locust Westchester Tree Life

Both statuesque and whimsical, Black Locust trees are beautiful and offer golden leaves come fall time!  The beautiful compound leaves of a Black Locust tree will be interesting for you and your loved ones to admire.

What kind of trees are you considering planting this year?  Let Westchester Tree Life’s plant health care professionals assist you with planting your new tree.  We can assist in choosing the best place for you to plant your tree, assist you in testing the soil and more!

To contact Westchester Tree Life, fill out our FREE online consultation form.

Lyme Disease and Borrelia Mayonii

Lyme disease is enough to scare people into tick-repellent and caution against hiking in the woods unprotected, but scientists have just discovered a new bacterium which causes Lyme Disease.

Westchester Tree Life Tick Safety

Scientists from Rochester, Minnesota’s Mayo Clinic have reported a new bacterium which has recently begun to make people sick.  While Borrelia burgdorferi is the predominant causative agent in Lyme Disease, Mayo Clinic scientists have discovered a new genome of bacteria now called Borrelia mayonii (“Mayonii” pays homage to the scientists of the Rochester, MN Mayo Clinic.

The Symptoms of Borrelia mayoniiWestchester Tree Life

Similar to Borrelia burgdorferi, researchers believe Borrelia mayonii is also transmitted to humans through black-legged ticks (commonly known as deer ticks).  The symptoms of Borrelia mayonii are:

  • nausea and vomiting
  • diffuse rashes (rather than a single bull’s-eye rash associated with Lyme Disease)
  • higher concentration of bacteria in the blood

Treatment of Borrelia mayonii

Patients infected with Borrelia mayoni who underwent treatment for their symptoms recovered.  Treatment included antibiotics used to treat Lyme disease.

The CDC recommends that health care providers who are caring for patients infected with Borrelia mayonii follow the antibiotic regimen described by the infectious Diseases Society of America.

Read more about Borrelia mayonii from this informative NPR article, here.

Tree Removal in Westchester County

Look no further for proper tree removal in Westchester County than Westchester Tree Life!  Our team of professionally-certified arborists can safely remove a dangerous damaged or dead tree from your property!  To receive a free estimate for tree removal call Westchester Tree Life at (914) 238-0069 or fill out an online consultation form here.

Fallen Tree Westchester Tree Life

Never attempt to remove a tree yourself.

Attempting to remove a tree by yourself can result in property damage or someone getting hurt; Westchester Tree Life’s team has attended safety training classes to safely and effectively remove your tree!

Before we remove your tree, our tree care professionals can provide you with other options (if there are any available).

What are some signs my tree needs to be removed?  

If your tree is obviously damaged or leaning, it may need to be removed to prevent injury to your family and property.  A leaning tree can fall over under the weight of a winter storm’s snow, ice and harsh winds; prevent a dangerous situation if you have a damaged or leaning tree and call Westchester Tree Life to come assess the damage today!

Has your tree contracted a tree disease?  Your tree’s malady can be contagious and harmful to other trees and plants on your property.  Removing a diseased tree is a necessary preventative measure in keeping the rest of your plants healthy.  If you are unsure whether your tree has a tree disease, or have a question, reach out to Westchester Tree Life using our online form here.

What if my tree has broken branches?

Broken Tree Branch Westchester Tree Life

Broken tree branches become lethal during destructive storms, especially during winter.  If you have a broken tree branch, call Westchester Tree Life immediately.

Broken Tree Branch Westchester Tree Life

Strong winds can push the branch, weakening it further before it falls onto your roof, car, blocks a road or harms a person.

How Trees Survive Winter

Have you ever wondered how trees survive winter?  Winter in Westchester County, New York can be brutal; from frigid winds, heavy snowfall and sleet as well as the occasional below-freezing temperature.  Westchester Tree Life explores how trees survive winter!

Dormant Winter Tree Westchester Tree Life

DormancyDormant Tree Branch Westchester Tree LifeComparable to hibernation, trees survive winter in a state of dormancy.  A tree begins to prepare for dormancy once it looses its leaves in fall; this excludes conifers, which retain their nettles during winter.  This shedding of foliage is the first step of slowing down the tree’s metabolism, energy consumption and growth.

All About ABA

ABA-Westchester-Tree-Life

ABA or Abscisic acid is produced in the tree’s terminal buds.  Terminal buds can be found at the point where a leaf breaks off before it falls.  Once that happens, ABA gathers where the leaf has broken off; this chemical suspends the tree’s growth and prevents cells from dividing.  Preventing growth is part of a tree’s dormancy process.  This saves energy, as the tree isn’t making any new food for energy and has to conserve the food it has stored.  This limited energy is used sparingly, when needed.

American Chestnut Trees

American chestnut trees accounted for a large portion of forest specimens pre-1900’s.  Once a pathogen was introduced to American chestnut trees due to the importing of Japanese chestnut trees, American chestnut trees began to disappear.  Since the decline of these majestic beauties communities and scientists have teamed up to create organizations to preserve, protect and bring awareness to the amazing American chestnut trees!

Healthy American chestnuts in Lesesne State Park. (Credit Vicky Sawyer)

(Credit Vicky Sawyer)

The Tallest American Chestnut Tree in North America

The tallest American chestnut tree in North America is rooted in Maine and is 115 feet tall.  This amazing discovery prompted members of the American Chestnut Foundation to visit the tree and gather information.  Forest scientist Brian Roth estimated the American chestnut tree to be around a century old after examining the specimen.

Tallest American Chestnut Tree Susan Sharon MPBN

via Susan Sharon MPBN

Scientists have sampled DNA from this tall American chestnut tree to preserve in a living gene bank; information gathered will assist in research to restore the chestnut to its historic range.  Read more about the tallest American chestnut tree in North America via NPR here.

The American Chestnut Foundation

American Chestnut Foundation

Committed to the conservation, protection and expansion of America’s forests since 1990, The American Chestnut Foundation has planted more than 45 million trees!  The American Chestnut Foundation has also replanted forests destroyed by both human action and natural disasters.

 

Do You Have a Dangerous Tree?

Identifying dangerous trees before winter snowstorms become the norm is a good idea if you want to maintain a safe yard and environment.  To prevent a potentially dangerous situation, checking your trees for signs of weakness is a great way to prepare for the upcoming winter months.  For a thorough tree assessment from a tree care professional, call Westchester Tree Life at (914) 238-0069!
Leaning Tree Westchester Tree Life

Dangerous Tree Risks

Before review the signs of a dangerous tree, let’s review the risks.  A falling tree can seriously injure one or multiple people, cause extensive property damage and in worst case scenarios, result in death.  To completely safeguard against dangerous tree risks, we highly recommend reaching out to Westchester Tree Life for help from a professional arborist in Westchester County.  Our certified professionals are properly trained in assessing tree health and potentially dangerous tree situations.

Fallen Tree Branch Westchester Tree Life

Ground Inspection

Leaning Tree 2 Westchester Tree Life

Begin your inspection at the base of your tree’s trunk.  Pull aside any moss or foliage which may be covering the base of your tree, as you will want a clear view of the soil surrounding the tree.  A tree’s soil features tell-tale signs of a tree’s health; for example, cracked or raised soil which is opposite to your tree’s lean may indicate root disturbances hinting that the tree is in the process of uprooting.

Branch Inspection

Strong Tree Branch Westchester Tree Life

Weak branches tend to give when under the weight of heavy snow.  To eliminate a disastrous situation, we encourage conducting a branch inspection.  We encourage our customers to conduct tree care inspections with each changing season; this helps to maintain a well-pruned tree.  If your tree is in need of dead or weak branch removal, let us take care of it!  Fill out our online consultation form here.

Other Danger Signs to Look For

Keep an eye out for tree trunks with holes or cracks in them as well as missing bark.  Tree which have tight branch growth also indicate that it may need a plant health care program.

Dangerous Tree Westchester Tree Life

For a thorough inspection of the trees on your property, we highly encourage you to have a professional arborist inspect the area.  Our professionally trained tree care specialists are able to identify any dangerous trees and offer solutions!  To receive a consultation, fill out our online form here.