Trees are an essential part of Birmingham’s landscape. They provide us with a range of benefits that help mitigate the impacts of climate change such as air cooling and storm water interception
For us to continue to benefit from these we need to plant new trees to replace those that are reaching the end of their life and more to increase those benefits provided to us.
Although mature trees are quite resilient the young trees that are planted out in the streets and green spaces need a helping hand in the first few years especially during the early spring and summer months or prolonged periods of dry weather.
While the City Council and Kier do what they can to keep these watered there are thousands that need to be tended to every year and we all can lend a helping hand.
Newly planted trees need to be watered regularly over the summer months for the first three years after planting if they are going to establish well and thrive.
A trees requirement varies depending on several factors such as species and location, a general rule is that they should receive at least 50 litres of water per week during May, June, July, and August:
So, if you have a tree outside your house, or one that you pass on your daily walk, then you can help.
- Ideally water should be sustainably sourced. Rainwater is ideal, but bath water, or water which has been used for the washing up, is also suitable.
- If the tree has a watering pipe, then half of the water should be poured down the pipe and the other half on the surface of the tree. If the tree has a watering bag, then fill that.
- Watering should ideally be carried out in the early morning or evening.
Please try and water regularly during dry periods with as much as you can – Remember every little helps.
As well as watering there are a few other simple things you can do to help our young trees.
- Keep the area free from grass or other plant growth, weed by hand if you can but do watch out for any sharp objects. Remember careless strimming can kill young trees
- If the tree has a protective cage around it remove any litter and dispose of it responsibly.
- If you can add some mulch around the outside of the planting location about 75mm (3”) deep – but don’t mound it up the trunk. Think “doughnuts not volcanoes”.
- Check for damaged or broken branches – if you are able to remove this with a clean-cut using secateurs this will allow the tree to heal quicker.
If you find a tree that is dead or vandalised, then do report it here Birmingham Tree Maintenance
If you would like to learn more about trees and are interested in getting more involved check out the other Birmingham Tree People pages.