Your trees are stressed from the prolonged drought and extremely high temperatures we’ve all endured this summer. Stress from drought and heat can cause limb dieback, increase vulnerability to insects and disease and contribute to tree decline. Apply 10-20 gallons of water once a week to trees that were planted in the last three years (unless it has rained at least one inch that week). Apply the water in a manner that allows it to soak in, not run off! Established trees need water too; frequent and strong spring winds have increased water loss from evapotranspiration (moisture loss from soil evaporation and leaf transipiration). Apply water at the drip-line for established trees. Water use restrictions are in effect for Austin, but you can still hand-water your trees any time. Applying extra mulch will help the soil retain moisture and insulate roots from the heat.
Take a look at our Resources page to learn more about different watering methods that conserve our limited water resources and choose one that works for you. We don’t which way you choose, as long as you keep those trees alive to provide shade next summer and protect our groundwater by slowing rainwater runoff when the rains finally do come!