As the owner of a rental property, you may require your tenants to maintain the lawn but tree care should be left to the professionals. This is because pruning and maintenance of trees require using special tools and working atop ladders, both a liability risk if your tenant were to undertake the tasks. Fortunately, there are only a few key services you need to depend upon a tree service for.
1. Spring Pruning
Spring pruning is the most important maintenance task that is best left to the pros. This heavy pruning is done to remove damaged, dead, and diseased wood, as well as to open up the crown for better sunlight penetration and air circulation. It's also a good idea to request that the trunk be limbed up, which means removing lower branches so that the tree is easy and safe to walk underneath. This will also discourage tenants from climbing and hanging items off the tree, both things that can cause damage.
2. Mulch Upkeep
Mulching around the tree isn't just for looks. If your tenants handle mowing, a mulch ring around the tree reduces the chances of accidental bark damage from the lawnmower since there is now no need to tend a lawn near the trunk. The mulch also keeps down weeds and helps retain soil moisture, which leads to healthier trees. Your tree service can install a barrier to keep the mulch in place. They will then replenish the mulch during the main service visit in the spring.
3. Hedge Shaping
If your property features evergreen hedges along fences lines or walkways, then they must be pruned annually to maintain their shape and foliage density. Missing even one year of pruning can lead to overgrown hedges that can't be fully cut back without revealing bare wood. Once this happens the only options are to live with ugly hedges, which can reduce the value of the property to future tenants, or to have them removed. Hedges are typically pruned in early spring, but some hedges may require a light second pruning in summer.
4. Fall Cleanup
Autumn leaves are beautiful on the tree, but if left on the lawn over winter they can smother out the grass and destroy landscaping. Furthermore, piles of old leaves can harbor pests that can make their way into the rental home. The best way to ensure everything is cleaned up before snow falls is to hire a tree company to rake and remove the leaves.
Contact a professional tree service if you need help taking care of the trees on your property.