We all know pruning and mulching are key components to any tree and shrub care program. But sometimes, despite our best efforts, our trees and shrubs’ health falls victim to pests. Thankfully, there’s a solution to this problem. A dormant oil application a very important part of our Tree and Shrub Care schedule program.
What is Dormant Oil?
Dormant oil, also known as horticulture oil, is crucial in the fight against insects. When mixed with water, it kills exposed insects and their eggs by smothering them.
Dormant Oil Guards Against Insect Infestations
While it’s not 100% guaranteed, there are many insects that a dormant oil application can shield your tree from. These common insects include:
- Spotted Lantern Fly
- Mealy worms
- White flies
When Should Dormant Oil Be Applied?
The timetable may vary depending on which species of ornamental tree(s) you have. However, winter is ideal in most cases in North Carolina. Essentially, you want to target the pests before they have a chance to hatch or emerge in spring. And to minimize negative side effects to the trees, you want to do this before buds have a chance to open.
Dormant Oils Are Safe And Effective
Compared to other harsh chemicals, dormant oils pose few risks to people or plants. They compliment other pest control strategies, especially biological controls. Because oils are applied as a spray, they evaporate quickly, leaving behind minimal residue.
Dormant Oils Work Smarter Not Harder
One of the most common concerns when applying pesticides is: will it harm the plants? Dormant oil is selective, meaning it will only hurt the insects it’s targeting. This is of great benefit because it does not harm the pests’ natural enemies since they are not yet active. For instance, Ladybugs are a great natural predator to aphids.
Choose Pine Valley Turf For Your Tree Care Program
Dormant oil is one of 6 annual treatments that makes up the Pine Valley Tree and Shrub care programs. The professionals at Pine Valley Turf are here to help feed and protect your trees and ornamentals so that they look their best and survive the winter.