Ask an Arborist: What Happens if Fruit Trees Bud in the Winter?

Do you need to seek help from a certified arborist if your fruit trees bud in the winter? Early blooming can be stressful, leading to issues with fruit production.

Fruit Trees Bud in Winter

Fruit trees need protection and expert care in the winter months, particularly if they begin budding before spring has arrived. But why do fruit trees bloom early and how do arborists recommend dealing with the problem?

Why Fruit Trees Bud in the Winter

Trees rely on weather cues to keep their growth cycles on track, and Mother Nature often sends mixed signals here in northern Utah. The calendar might say it’s winter, but the weather sometimes feels more like spring.

When the temperature is unseasonably warm, trees start growing as if spring has already arrived. Even a single day of freakishly warm weather can cause early budding.

Why Early Budding Is a Problem for Fruit Trees

For best fruiting, any arborist will tell you that trees need the winter dormant season for rest. Early budding cuts the dormant period short, which can delay fruit growth in the spring and affect the quality of the crop.

Fruit buds are extremely vulnerable to freezing temperatures. When buds are hit with a cold snap after blooming has begun, the new growth may be shocked and suffer damage. And without attention from a certified arborist, the trees may not be able to bloom again later in the year.

Arborists’ Advice for Fruit Trees that Bud in the Winter

With proper care, fruit trees can often survive the stresses of winter budding. An arborist may recommend specific measures to encourage early bloomers to return to their typical growth cycles, however.

You can also take steps to help prevent early fruit tree budding. If the ground isn’t frozen, an arborist may advise that you try mulching around the trees. Mulch provides insulation, which may help protect against fruit crop losses.

In addition, keep an eye on the weather forecast. If temperatures seem unseasonably warm, an arborist may suggest watering your trees. Wetting the trees will keep them cool, tricking them into sticking with their regular winter growth patterns and saving your fruit production.

For more information on fruit tree care in northern Utah, consult with the certified arborist team at Reliable Tree Care. Our highly qualified professionals can offer expert advice and tips to keep your trees healthy all year long.

Reliable Tree Care provides a full range of affordable tree services to homeowners and businesses throughout the greater Salt Lake City area. To schedule a free, comprehensive arborist evaluation of your fruit trees, contact our Murray, Utah, office today.