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Summer Management Tips


Continue with vegetation control

Vegetation control should have been carried out between April and June. If not, it is urgently required to do so now. Two options are available: trampling or chemical control. Trampling involves stamping on weeds around the trees. Chemical control involves the use of an appropriate herbicide. And remember: lack of weed control in the early years is the most common cause of poor performance and plantation failure!

Check for frost damage

Severe winter cold rarely damages trees in Irish forests. However, late spring and early summer frost can be detrimental when the buds start to burst. Frost damaged buds will appear brown in colour and can die off. The best prevention is to plant frost resistant tree species.

Take broadleaf foliage samples

If you are concerned about the health of your trees and suspect a nutrient deficiency in your forest, foliage analysis is recommended. An approved laboratory will analyse foliage samples from the forest and provide a written report identifying possible deficiencies and will recommend remedial action. The levels of nutrients will vary with time of year so correct timing of foliage collection is critical. Foliage analysis of broadleaves should be carried out during August.

Download this leaflet on nutrient deficiencies in forest crops (PDF 0.9MB).

Carry out broadleaf shaping

As explained in a previous edition of Teagasc Forestry eNews, shaping is the process of removing forks and very large competing side branches in order to produce long straight lengths of timber for a high value market. For most species, July is a good period to shape broadleaf trees. Choose a single straight dominant shoot as a leader:

  • Correct forks by removing the weaker side of the fork
  • Remove excessively large side branches (larger than half the diameter of the main stem)
  • Remove other side branches only if they are competing with the main leading shoot
  • Shaping should start early if trees are growing vigorously
  • Use sharp, good quality secateurs. Loppers and a pruning saw may have to be used if shaping is left very late

Download this leaflet on formative shaping (PDF 0.5MB).

Further detailed management tips can be found in this leaflet "Management of Young Forests" (PDF 2MB).

Source: HortiTrends News Room