This is the time of year when things finally begin to change around town. Some trees are changing color as they adjust to the cooler winter temperatures and others are pushing out spurts of new growth. One of the most overlooked practices this time of year by homeowners is watering and fertilizing. A big misconception is that because everything is pushing out new growth and seems to be growing well, that they are getting the right amount of water and fertilizer, unfortunately more often than not, this isn't the case.
To Do List:
- Watering: During the cooler months it is important that we back off the watering frequency. This allows trees, plants and even grass a chance to develop strong deep roots that will encourage more growth come the following spring. This also creates a landscape that is less susceptible to disease and insect infestation. It is important to continue to water deeply each time you water, and different plants will have different frequency requirements. Be sure to read up on our Watering Guide schedule.
- Fertilizing: Fertilizing everything and hardening them up as we say in the industry is a great way to give your landscape one last push through the winter months. Fertilizing your palms, shade trees, evergreen trees, flowering trees, and even your dormant trees now gives them the best chance of pulling though the winter and taking off come spring time. We recommend using our custom blended fertilizers for your landscape needs as they are specifically formatted for our soil and weather conditions. These can be purchased at all Moon Valley Nurseries location or Click here to see all of our fertilizers.
Below are a few trees our experts recommend planting for this month:
One of the most stunning trees on display, the Live Oak is a great choice for Houston planting because of its adaptability, performance in the hot summer months and its ability to grow in tough soil conditions. Its name is derived from its ability to “live” throughout the winter when other oaks are dormant or leafless. It has a wide canopy of dark green leaves and when planted in rows it can give your landscape a privacy wall or shade barrier that provides immense protection and beauty.
One of the best shade trees or those sun drenched homes, the Chinese Elm is an attractive tree that can be planted as the focal point in any landscape.It absolutely loves the sun and the variety we carry at Moon Valley does not weep. Ours is a fast growing tree that grow upright and round for maximum shade and curb appeal. It's leaves are small and elliptic in shape and the bark sheds in a puzzle fashion. It's a fantastic option for any landscape seeking instant shade.
This fast growing tree is an excellent option for those water conscious homeowners looking to add shade and color at the same time. The Tipu is one of the fastest growing varieties we offer at Moon Valley. In time, it's upright and open umbrella shaped canopy will provide shade where desired. When it comes to color, it's flowers are a golden yellow color and are abundant in late spring to early summer. It can become drought tolerant once established and it thrives in cold and heat.
A fast growing, dense, shade-producing tree that grows to a moderate height, the Camphor Tree looks great in any landscape design where a lush appeal is desired. This uniquely shaped tree grows well in any soil type and requires very little maintenance. A solid performer for Houston, this tree is hardy and heat tolerant. Along with its beautiful green bark and fragrant foliage, the Camphor never loses its leaves, which makes this a great choice for the inexperienced or over-worked landscaper.
n. Magnolia's are amazing trees. For starters, their cream-white flowers not only are impressive to look at, they also give off a pleasing aroma. It's large waxy-like leaves have helped the Magnolia have a thick canopy, giving much-needed shade. At Moon Valley, a few of our Magnolia varieties have the green and brown backs adding yet another layer of color. Over time, the Magnolia will create a wide range of shade and it absolutely thrives in our sun and heat.
The Carrotwood is named for the carrot-like appearance that this tree gives when planted into the ground. Commonly grown as a multi-trunk tree, these trunks and branches tend to funnel inward, producing the 'stem' of the carrot, while the dark, dense evergreen canopy represents the leaves waiting to be plucked from the ground. The Carrotwood is an ideal evergreen solution in Houston, as it takes well to clay-type soils and high moisture environments. The Carrotwood is a great alternative to the common Oaks seen throughout Houston, as they're just about as reliable, but with a look unlike anything else in your landscape.
Piru Queen Palm
Specially grown at our farms, the Piru Queen Palm is unlike other Queen Palms. Our Piru Queen Palms feature thicker and harder trunks, denser and greener fronds, and produce fuller crowns. Our Queen Palms can handle hot summers, cold winters, and windy days. The palm is supported by a narrow trunk which makes it ideal in tight spaces around your pool, but it does require overhead space as the palm grows to statuesque heights.
Canary Island Date Palm
Named for its resemblance to a pineapple when the palm is younger, the Pineapple Palm produces wide fronds and requires space when planted around a pool. It grows slowly, eventually forming a wide trunk and its fronds begin to rise from the ground, creating a classic palm tree shape. The Pineapple Palm can handle the cold and loves the sun. It’s a popular choice for tropical landscape and is commonly seen around resorts.