Pine trees are visible throughout San Diego County. Pruning pine trees is important to its overall health. However, pruning can lead to an attack from bark beetles. So what’s one to do? One of the easiest ways to keep your tree healthy AND prevent a bark beetle invasion is to prune your pine trees at the right time.
Pine Tree Pest: Bark Beetles
Bark beetles reproduce in pine tree bark. What happens is a couple moves in and they start to have babies and their babies have babies. Everyone is existing on the nutrition provided by the tree they’re living in. This is okay when it occurs in dead and dying wood because the process helps promote its decomposition and recycling.
But where there is a shortage of dead and dying wood, i.e., in landscaped areas, a bark beetle infestation could jeopardize a group of otherwise healthy pines. Those could be a row of mature pines providing shade to a western exposure or a grouping of pines adding vertical interests to a landscape design.
Protect Your Pines with Proper Pruning
The best time to prune your pine trees is from November through February, when the bark beetle is inactive. Healthy pines become more vulnerable to the bark beetle after a pruning, when exposed wood exists. But if trees are pruned while the beetle is inactive, the threat of a bark beetle invasion is significantly decreased. Plus, pine trees do have a natural defense against invaders: sap. Sap works to immobilize and suffocate a tree’s invaders. But while it is helpful, i’ts not full-proof.And the last thing any property owner or manager would want is to expose an important piece of a commercial landscape to the sinister bark beetle.
If you’re a property or community manager and have pines on your property, contact Heaviland Landscape Management at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our experienced team and certified aborists can help maintain the health of your pine trees.