Evergreen Tree Care: How to Best Care for Evergreen Trees and Shrubs
Updated: Feb 23
Evergreen trees and shrubs are extremely popular in yards and landscapes throughout Northern Colorado and the Front Range. This is because many evergreens are very hardy, being well suited to our arid environment. Evergreen trees are also low-maintenance, easy to care for, and great if you want to add privacy to any outdoor area. With the popularity of evergreen trees and shrubs, we are going to talk about evergreen tree care so that you can be sure to keep your evergreen trees and shrubs happy and healthy for years to come.
What Are Evergreen Trees and Shrubs?
Evergreen trees and shrubs are easiest to identify by their foliage. As their name suggests, evergreen trees and shrubs stay green regardless of the season, and they do not lose all of their foliage in the fall as deciduous trees do. Evergreen trees do shed some of their foliage, however it is immediately replaced by new growth. Most people, when they hear "evergreen," think of pine trees. However, there are many other leafy plants that are also evergreens. Boxwood shrubs are another popular type of evergreen shrub that is excellent for growing in colder climates such as our own. If you would like to explore other types of evergreen trees and shrubs, head over to our Plant Finder to do some exploring!
Evergreen Tree/Shrub Care Tips
Like any other plants, evergreen trees and shrubs require a certain level of care if they are to continue growing strong and healthy. Here are a few things to keep in mind when caring for your evergreens.
1. Which Evergreen Trees and Shrubs Grow Well in Colorado?
The first and most important thing to consider when adding an evergreen tree or shrub to your landscaping is the variety and its hardiness. It is so important to make sure that the variety of evergreen you are purchasing is suited to our growing environment here in Colorado. If it is not well suited to the area, there is not much you can do to help it grow strong and healthy. At Bath, we will help you select plants that will grow well in the area and are hardy enough to handle our harsh winters. You can also be sure to select plants that are suited to our growing environment by being aware of the hardiness zone which a plant is rated for. Learn all about hardiness zones and discover what hardiness zone is Colorado today!
2. Where To Plant an Evergreen Tree or Shrub
Where you plant your new evergreen tree will also have a big effect on its success. Evergreen trees require good drainage, adequate space to grow, and usually need full sun exposure. So, when deciding where to plant your evergreen tree, consider things such as proximity to your home, sidewalks, or driveways, the amount of sun exposure the tree will receive, if the area in question tends to have drainage issues or gets soggy easily, any overhead powerlines, and the like. All of these factors will be crucial to the success of your evergreen tree.
3. How Much To Water Evergreen Trees and Shrubs
Some evergreen trees need more moisture than others, though the majority of evergreen varieties are drought-tolerant once established and are able to survive with very little supplemental water. Newly planted trees will need regular, consistent watering to help them grow deep, strong roots. After they are established though, they should only need to be watered during periods of prolonged drought. Some winter watering may be required during the cold months if there is no snow on the ground. Extremely dry winter conditions will damage the roots of your evergreen, so making sure the soil does not remain completely dry for extended amounts of time will benefit your evergreen. On the other hand, overwatering your evergreen trees and shrubs is another thing you should be very careful not to do. If the roots of your plants are sitting in soggy, over-saturated soil for any amount of time, this can drown the roots and cause irreversible damage.
4. Do Evergreen Trees/Shrubs Need To be Fertilized?
Like all living, growing things, nutrients are required for healthy growth. Evergreen trees and shrubs generally do not need to be fertilized often, though they may need some extra nutrients if their growth is significantly slowed, if the needles of your evergreen are abnormally short or discolored, or if your evergreen is planted in soil that is less than ideal. These are circumstances where your evergreen tree may need some extra nutrients to keep it strong and healthy. Be careful not to over-fertilize though, as this can have equally harmful effects!
5. Pruning and Other Maintenance
Evergreen trees and shrubs generally require very little maintenance compared to most other deciduous trees and shrubs. In terms of pruning, most evergreens require little to no pruning at all! Mulching the base of your evergreen trees and shrubs can also help to insulate the roots of your plants, maintaining consistent temperature and moisture levels. Otherwise, evergreen tree care and maintenance is really rather simple. The most important thing is to know which type of evergreen you have and if it requires any specific care or maintenance. Knowing what evergreen shrub care or evergreen tree care is needed is the first step to a successful plant.
How To Diagnose a Struggling Evergreen Tree or Shrub
Some signs that your evergreen tree or shrub may be struggling include heavy leaf or needle drop, needles that begin to turn brown, cracks in the bark of the plant, drooping, wilting, or yellowing, and portions of the evergreen dying back altogether. Especially during our cold and dry winters, evergreen trees and shrubs can suffer from water deficiency. This is why, as we mentioned above, it may be necessary to water your plants during the winter season. Even though your plants are in a dormant state, they are still alive and if their roots become too dry, they will begin to desiccate. So, if there is no snow on the ground or there has been no other significant moisture in the last month and it is warmer than 40 degrees Fahrenheit outside, consider giving your trees and shrubs a good drink!
How To Care for Evergreen Trees and Shrubs
If you have more questions on evergreen tree care or evergreen shrub care, please let us know! You can also check out our Plant Finder to explore different evergreen trees and shrubs that grow well in Colorado.