North London Tree Surgeons
Mon-Sat: 08:00 - 17:00
05 Nov 2021
Whitewashing Trees

Protecting and preparing your fruit trees for winter

Numerous layers of cracked and dead bark accumulate on large branches and stems of aged trees. And both are of no use at all. It actually could inadvertently do some harm, causing substantial damage.
All these crevices, clefts and detached loose scales of bark are the best place for stockpiling of various infections, predominantly, fungal diseases. Also, all these places are an appropriate shelter for winter seasons for things like eggs, pupae, larvae or adult bugs of many kinds.

Bark peeling

How much cleaner and more productive your garden could be the next year If you managed to get rid of unwanted pests. In this regard at the end of October or in early November, after some rains have fallen, when the bark gets soaked enough, you should wait for a spell of good weather and take advantage to terminate them. On such conditions you wouldn’t have to hunt one particular insect or one specific swarm of bugs. It would be much easier to terminate them all together whilst they hide in roughness and clefts of the bark. Place some sheet of fabric, canvas cloth or roofing felt at the base of the trunk within a radius of about 1-1,5 m in all directions. You’ll need a wire brush and a special scraper for the bark peeling.
It is important to scrape off and remove all rotten bark onto canvas at the base of the tree so that pieces of infected with fungi bark don’t fall onto soil, potentially spreading the infections.

It is also very important to not damage live and new bark under layers of rotten. Otherwise, the whole exercise will be counterproductive, as you will be removing potential pests and simultaneously become a real one yourself. Burn all the produced waste comprising of rotten bark and insects.
Peeling the old rotten bark off is highly important operation, but it is not the only way of getting rid of the winter time invaders and diseases. This is also very important as it helps to improve gaseous interchange, respiration of the bark, and thereby increasing, at least a little, viability of the plant.

However, never try to peel off the bark from young trees. It usually is in its best condition and when interfered with you do nothing but harm to it.

Whitewashing the boles

Educational material
Whitewashed trees in garden

After You have peeled off all the old rotten bark from the plants you should whitewash them. Most allotment gardeners whitewash trees with timing to coincide with the beginning of spring or with the first access to the garden with a purpose to make the garden look beautiful and festive. It is certainly nice and praiseworthy. Along with that the main function of whitewashing is a method of disinfection; it protects the plant from bronzing and frost-cracks. Such troubles most often occur in periods from late January to late March, when the temperature on the sunny and shady sides of a trunk sometimes differ a dozen or two degrees. Therefore, we strongly recommend you to whitewash trunks and bases of large stems in autumn. Never do whitewashing of trees in winter, when gardens are usually snow-blanketed and you need to dig up tree for whitewashing and after the work is done have to put snow back to protect your tree. For whitewashing you should use a commercially available proprietary mix. However, you can prepare the whitewash yourself. For that you should take 10 liters of water 2,5 kilograms of lime, 0.5 kilograms of copper sulfate for disinfection and 0.1 kilograms of carpenters’ glue for the whitewash to adhere to the tree.
You should whitewash not only the trees that have bark peeling off, but also young ones. And what is more, the young trunks should be whitewashed on a first-priority basis. They are susceptible to sunburns and frost-cracks.

You can find some more useful information on this topic here

Best wishes and good luck with your gardening.

18 Oct 2019

Timely fruit tree management

What are the common mistakes gardeners make?
• They prepare planting pits just before planting the seedlings. Some certain processes in the soil should have been initiated which would prepare good environment for root ball to give it best possible start.
• Don’t plant saplings too deep in the ground. Rinds may rot at the base of the stems and trees may die out within 3-4 years. You should remember that apple, pear, plum, cherry, raspberry are the cultivars which root crown should be at the soil surface level while bedding out.
• The seedlings are transported with foliage and uncovered roots. It is strongly unacceptable. You should always cover the roots with a wet cloth. If the roots nonetheless had dried up, dip it into water for 1-2 days, so it could take up enough moisture before being planted.
• If adult seedlings of 3-5 years are planted, they usually end up suffering from diseases for a long time, do not bear many fruit and often die from loss of the roots while being dug out. The best age for fruit trees saplings is one or two years.

soil digging, young plant

What is an approximate scheme of nursing of tree crowns during a year?

February-March: Whilst there is spare time and there is no vegetable growth under the trees yet, you should prepare light, pollard trees, remove dead and old branches.
April-May: It’s important to crown thin saplings to allow more light and to prevent dropping off of the ovary and fruit enlargement. The abundance of light and good airing reduce fruit decay. At this period the condition of branches and their fertility are clearly visible, and scars on the bark hill over much faster when an active life is dawning in it.
June-July: it is better to revive old overgrown seeded trees now, than in the fall. The nipping and thinning enhances ripening of a harvest.
August-September: stone fruit trees have already “given” the harvest and are ready for any kind of processing. Moreover, they will have enough time to prepare for the winter after that. However, flower beds or a fertile garden plot under a tree may complicate the process.
October-November: You are free to do anything y

ou want with any cultivars. But you should treat freshly cut scars with pruning sealer and once more smooth it out with a knife up to a living edges in spring too.

What does a tree need and what does its master need?

Primary aim of any fruit tree in existence is growing and producing as much fruit as possible. In most common settings trees primarily struggle for light and space. Here are the characteristics of an effective garden tree to consider prior to planting:
• It should not be higher than you. Tall trees are harder to establish. In fact, a smaller tree is easier to plant and easier to maintain as well as harvest the crop. And all the efforts You put are targeted to the fruit-spurs, but not to a useless multitude of branches stretching into the sky.
• All branches should be easily accessible not only for easier collecting the fruit, but also for pinching the bourgeons.
• Each branch of the crown must be a fruit-spur, i.e. branches should be inclined or horizontal and open to the sunrays for the most time of the day. A tree will be fruitful only when all the forces are directed to nutrition of the fruits. Why would it “distract” itself for building up useless branches?
• Smaller trees takes up less space and do not obscure the plot (only if it is not a relaxing area).

We wish you successful planting of and should you need assistance, give us a shout

03 Jun 2019
Cherry tree in a garden planted

The right way of bedding out fruit trees

We’ve got a new gardening season at the threshold, and each of the landowners, whether he’s got a small or large plot, is building long-term plans for its settlement. It might seem that for allotment gardeners, whose sites have long been treated and planted, this process is much easier, but it’s not as they’ve got heavy workload every year. But for novice landowners everything is much more difficult. They should put a lot of efforts and work much before they get real visible results.
If You’ve got untreated plot of land, first of all You should uproot it from the wild plants, treat and cultivate the soil. And what is more newcomers usually plan some constructions on this stage. New owners of more or less treated land plots are usually in a hurry to plant it with the maximum of different cultures immediately after the acquisition. Frequently they unknowingly assume on their allotments many severe mistakes, which professionals then have to correct for a long time that sometimes take more than one year. Any rush in this case is no good. Before mastering the land plot, You should properly plan it with due consideration of the orientation relative to the cardinal directions, topography, location of close laid communications and other factors.
Try to imagine where and what should be located. You should decide where You will place utility zone, zone for premises (if there are no such ones), chose a place for garden beds and various fruit plants. Try to make a plan and put it on paper. Looking at your sketches try to imagine how you leave the house to fetch water, opening the greenhouse on your way to the well to give it airing and then, without going far from home, set about weeding the vegetable beds. Only after You have decided what is the most convenient alternate layout for You, proceed to the selection of fruit crops. Of course, the matter is not that simple, and even experienced and highly skilled designers sometimes spend much more time than a single day making a proper plan for the site. But, in our opinion, it is much more easer for each separate land owner to adapt his place of work and rest to his own dreams and plans.
Choosing a right assortment of fruit crops is also no simple matter. Lucky are those landowners who own more than 10 acres of land, in such a case, they can purchase and plant anything they want. But if your land plot is small and every piece of it is for a count, what should You do if You’d like to grow for your family the maximum number of crops?
The main mistake many allotment gardeners are making is that they are trying to buy as many seedlings as possible and plant the land plot with them massively. Being in the excitement they buy up everything without distinction. Please don’t try to grasp the immensity. At first, this tactics, of course, will bring some results and the harvest will be plenteous. But You should not forget that over the time plants need much more living space than in the early years, their need for nutrients, lighting and so on will change a lot. On the contrary, thick planting over the years will cause the harvest getting worse: the fruits will be small and tasteless.
While choosing planting material You should give preference to the best brands, both new and old proven ones. It is especially important to select promising cultivars which are recommended for the area where your garden plot is located. There is no point in bringing plants from other regions. So many disappointments get allotment gardeners in central regions, purchasing seedlings from the neighboring more southern countries. Strong-looking seedlings frequently fail to get accustomed to new conditions. The first winter would be fatal for this kind of planting material. Large majority of southern cultivars, surviving in the northern, eastern and western regions of the country, get not enough heat and the fruits are completely tasteless. Fruits of the northern cultivars ripen in the southern regions prematurely and lose the ability to storage. So, is it worth spending time and energy on growing those products, which You wouldn’t eat?
If your land plot is small it would be much more advantageous to put on it one or two cultivars of apple trees with different ripening terms. For example, the old and proven early ripening cultivars would be rather suitable, such as Melba, Papirovka. Later ripening cultivars appropriate for the long term storage are Sparzan and other. Not far from them You can bed out two or three bushes of edible honeysuckle of different and preferably not too high cultivars. Light penumbra of apple crown would not hurt them. But a shadow of large trees over the years will surely appear. Near to each other can coexist two bushes of black currant (with different ripening terms) or one bush of red and another of white current. We believe that You can always find a space for a couple of small Japanese quince bushes. Having chosen cultivars blossoming with white and scarlet red flowers, You will surely decorate your garden and collect the nutritious fruitage, which will implement you during the winter season with much-needed vitamin C.
Gooseberries would perfectly accommodate between plum trees. If You’d love to pick berries for a long period, You should select a red-, yellow- or green-fruited cultivars with different ripening terms and as the result from midsummer to autumn You’ll be able to relish not only delicious, but also very curative fruits of gooseberry.

Gooseberries  and fruit trees
Gooseberries are simply fantastic

We strongly discourage planting the land plot with many plum trees. Firstly, most of them give a huge amount of root-shoots, which You’ll have to fight endlessly. Secondly, in a fruitful year correctly chosen cultivars will give You enough fruits not only for feeding your family, but for canning and treating your friends, relatives and neighbors.
For children and for home treatment of colds it is necessarily to bed out somewhere near the fence a few bushes of a macrocarpous varietal raspberry. If for any reason You don’t like raspberry, try to bed out horticultural dewberry.
To an utmost regret such a much beloved by lots of people cultures as cherry will not produce crops at any land plot. That’s why before buying seedlings You should ascertain whether the land plot has a suitable location and what is more important, whether the soil is suitable for this crop (cherry categorically refuses to bear fruit on peaty soils). We recommend to decide on such cultivars as Lyubskaya, Vladimirskaya and Chocolate. These cultivars are winter-hardy, disease-resistant and bear fruit every year.
If desired, You can bed out pear trees with different ripening terms such as Lada – a cultivar ripening in summer, Chizhovskyaya – a cultivar ripening in late summer, and others.
And one more tip for You: do not bed out large spreading trees in the middle of the land plot, otherwise later it will shade the most of the plot. Try to bed out large trees and shrubs keeping close to the periphery of the plot. Please don’t forget that you still need a place for making cultivation beds for vegetable and herbaceous crops, strawberries. For these crops You should first of all pick up the most lightened place on the land plot with good soil conditions. At the southern wall of the house You can bed out grapes or any other mostly heat-loving plants.
Try to allocate a small site for recreation area where you could swing in a hammock or sit with your guests. In this area, You’d better try to use a decorative tree crops and perennial floricultural crop. You can get wants and needs met and incorporate in composition some decorative horticultural, such as barberry, viburnum, mespilus, hawthorn, sweet briar. In this matter everything depends on your taste and preferences. And of course, in the vicinity of recreation area You should not forget to bed out shrubs beautifully blooming and smelling during flowering – jasmine, lilac, silverberry elaeagnus and other.
You can always get in touch with us should you find yourself in a need of an advice.

Best wishes

07 Aug 2016

Relocating mature trees

<h3>Replanting / Relocating mature trees</h3>


In our every day tree surgery we have to move trees as a requirement. It is a tricky process where success leads to a happy tree and if you don’t get it right… a dead tree. So, we decided to share some insights.  Japanese Acer tree planing

You should get ready for relocation procedure beforehand. Dig a groove with depth of 40-50 cm. around the tree intended for replanting a year or two beforehand. All the roots except small ones should be cut off by the inner wall. The groove should be filled with wet soil and then compacted. By the time the tree is ready to be taken out, there will be fibrils formed at the cutoff points of roots. While taking plants up You should be extremely careful not to damage the root fibrils as it is very important for the trees survival. The rootball should be encased firmly with hessian canvas and for added support it should be wrapped with wire cloth for the whole construction not to disperse while it’ll be transported. You can make additional casing with boards.

Removing the tree with a digger

Move and  place the tree carefully in a pit dug  up in advance at the chosen location that you prefilled with compost and feed. You should proceed to carefully remove all the packing materials: boards, wire cloth and hessian canvas. Center the tree and feel up the remaining space with the previously removed soil aiming to have the root collar of the tree placed at ground level. Trees usually suffer very painfully from both: too much deepening or being overexposed on soil level.

After planting the plant you should make a groove in the soil around it and fill it with water. After the water is soaked up – water it again. After watering the soil, cover it with woodchip so that the water does not to evaporate too quickly.

Replanted trees have a large canopy sail but the roots are still loosely bound to the ground. A strong wind may uproot them and to avoid this, immediately after planting You should strengthen the plants with stakes or anchor wires. It would be much safer and durable to set 3 anchor wires. Divide the circle space around the tree into 3 equal parts (about 120° each). Drive firm wooden stakes or metal studs into these points. At the place on the tree, where, in your opinion should the center of gravity of the trunk be, attach three anchor wires. Tighten them and strengthen the lower ends at the stakes or studs. Do not forget to enclose some cloth under the wires on the trunk otherwise the bark, cambium can get damaged as well as the entire tree can get damaged from choking by simply growing and gaining girth.Relocated tree

Trimming just replanted trees is not necessary. The more leaves will be on them the faster roots will recover. It would be good to get an automatic watering system set up for trees regular irrigation at that stage. They need a lot of water whilst the root system gains strength.




You can contact our tree surgeons should you have any further or other queries.

27 Jul 2016
Working on large tree

Tree Surgeon Costs

If you have never had to hire a tree surgeon before, it can be a daunting experience.  Many companies advertise their services and offer similar pricing options, so what do you need to keep in mind when choosing a tree surgeon?

What does the tree surgeon’s quote depend on?

For most of us the cost is an important factor.  Most companies will want to come in person to assess the job involved before they give you any estimate of the costs involved.  The cost any tree surgeon gives you will vary depending on the complexity of the project, the number of trees involved, the safety and ease of access to your property.  If the job will involve getting permission from a local council or having to organise road closures around your property, you might have to pay a premium for that.  Cutting trees that are larger, grow close to a property and require to be cut sectionally will cost more than removing small trees.

How many quotes should I get?

As with any other jobs, the advice is to get at least 2-3 quotes from different tree surgeons to compare.  Do ask if the quote is fixed and includes everything involved or if there is a possibility that you might end up with extra costs.  Beware of companies that give you a quote over the phone.  The chances are they will increase it when they get there or even worse, after they have done the job.

Should you go with the lowest quote?

Unfortunately it is not always as simple as that.  You need to be satisfied that the tree surgeon you are hiring has the experience and expertise to handle the job.  They need to know how to prune the trees in a correct way not to cause damage.  The most important issue, however, is that they have to keep you, your property and your neighbouring properties safe.  Ask for a copy of their insurance, professional certificate and references from similar projects.  A little time spent on this research can save you a lot of hassle if something was to go wrong.

Should I hire a local tree surgeon?

Local knowledge is important and a local company that you contact directly is more likely to be motivated to do a good job.  There is a number of tree surgery price comparison websites, which compare the quotes for you.  Sounds good in principle, In reality though, you talk to a call centre and have very little or no contact with the actual tree surgeons who will handle the job. Local tree surgeons survive on word of mouth, so doing a good job is vital for their survival.

Hopefully this information will help you choose the right tree surgeon for your project. Do your research and choose the tree surgery company that you can trust.  Remember that the cheapest quote does not always mean the best.  With tree surgery high levels of service and safety are as important as the cost.