Importance of Trees

Why You Should Save Your Trees

Trees can be significantly impacted has people cut back on water to the rest of their landscapes.

Tree loss is a very costly problem: not only in expensive tree removal, but also in the loss of all the benefits trees provide. Your trees provide an immense range of health, energy, environmental, and economic benefits:

  • Trees improve air and water quality
  • Trees provide shade to the landscape and reduce water needs
  • Trees help keep your home cooler
  • Trees slow stormwater runoff and help recharge groundwater
  • Trees reduce soil erosion
  • Trees add value - often thousands of dollars' worth to your home and neighborhood
Image of a home with tree and yard

Trees & Drought in California

How Often to Water Mature Native or Drought - Tolerant Trees

Trees that have matured in non-turf landscapes adapt the easiest, especially drought tolerant species. Native trees, such as our California oaks, need MUCH less water than most non-native trees. California oaks may only need one or two deep waterings over the summer, but no water within 1 to 2 feet from the trunk. They absolutely need the soil to dry out for a month or two before more water, if any, needs to be reapplied.

Tell if Your Tree Is Not Getting Enough Water

Look at the tree leaves. Wilting leaves is the first indicator of lack of water to the roots. It can also mean too much water, which is unlikely in this drought.

How Is Watering Trees Different Than Watering My Lawn

Your lawn sits on the surface of the ground and has shallow roots. It needs watering a few times a week, usually with a sprinkler. Trees need to be watered less frequently, but with deeper soaking - because their roots grow deep in the earth - the majority of the tree roots are 1 1/2 to 3 feet deep. Lawn irrigation does not water trees effectively. It generally reaches only the first few" of soil, encouraging weak surface roots to grow.

How Watering Trees Help the Drought

Keeping trees alive helps keep your home cooler, meaning less energy and resources spent on cooling systems and decreased water use in other areas. Deep watering of trees also helps replenish groundwater in some areas.

Why Not Let Trees Die

Dead or dying trees can be dangerous and pose great risks to your property and your loved ones. Removal of dead or dying trees can cost thousands of dollars. In both cases, letting trees die also eliminates all the great health, home, economic, and environmental benefits that trees bring to your property.

Trees are important as they can help with climate adaptation in the face of extreme weather. Caring for your trees will ensure a healthier, cleaner, more vital community - whatever the weather.

Diagram of a tree and roots in ground