Evergreen shrubs are the perfect solution for having color in your yard throughout the year. They are also low-maintenance, making them popular among backyards in Maryland. They come in various species; besides spruces, hemlock, cypress, and pine, you also have hollies, aucuba, boxwood, wintercreeper, and many more. These plants, while beautiful and hardy, also need some tender loving care. Below is a short guide on how to maintain your evergreen shrubs.
Evergreen shrubs may be more susceptible to wind and sun, receiving scars from their harsh effects. The damage is greater when they live in regions with particularly cold, long winters. Allowing for some shelter from surrounding plants or hardscapes like fences can aid in their health. If you want to cover your evergreen shrub for protection against the elements, be sure to contact an arborist for recommendations on how to do so properly.
At some point, you will have to prune back your evergreen shrubs. You may want them to stay a specific size, shape them differently, or keep them from brushing against the house. They tend to grow very slowly, but some, like boxwoods, can shoot up dramatically each year. It is acceptable to cut them back anytime except for spring, when new growth emerges. Wait for the changes in the plant to calm down again before snipping away; cutting at the wrong time can encourage the shrub to grow even more aggressively or to die off.
When newly planted, evergreen shrubs will need weekly watering. They especially need water going into winter, which means not forgetting to give them a drink well into the fall. When watering your shrubs, do not give them shallow, short draughts. Instead, let them drink long and deeply each time so they can better develop their root systems. As for fertilizer, your shrub may need more or less depending on the soil type and health of your plant. For example, you might administer fertilizer made for the shrub if your property has sandy soil that makes absorbing nutrients harder.
Evergreen shrubs are hardy, but they are not immune to diseases and pests. Many types of shrub ailments exist, like various kinds of blight, viruses, rot, mildew, fungus, and spots. Your local arborist can give you a diagnosis on your plant and recommend the best treatment. It is best to know what your plant’s condition is before treating it.
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