He recommends doing the following for young trees:
• Stake young trees exposed to harsh winds. (Remove staking next spring.)
• Make sure they have moisture a foot deep. Water deeply several times through winter, if the weather warms up enough to allow it.
• Apply a 3-inch mulch layer over the root zone, leaving a half-foot of bare space/soil on all sides of the trunk. Mice view mulch piled up against tender bark as their winter’s room and board.
• Create a barrier to exclude rabbits. The traditional one is a 2-feet-tall cylinder of 1-inch-mesh chicken wire. Plastic tree wraps and spray-on repellents are also options. Wildlife-related wood loss threatens tree health. If an animal’s nibbling circles the trunk, “girdling” it with a strip of lost bark and cambium(green) tissue, the tree will die.
• Apply a light-colored tree wrap (generally tar-treated kraft paper or a spiraling plastic strip) from the ground to first branches. (Remove wrapping in spring.) New trees need this protection from direct sunlight and shifting temperatures for at least two winters. Young trees with smooth, thin bark such as ashes, all fruit trees, honey locusts, lindens, maples, oaks and willows, need wrapping for five or more winters.
For an unprotected thin-barked tree, sunny winter days can create a dangerous difference in bark temperatures, Upham said. The southwest side of a peach tree’s trunk, for example can be up 40 degrees warmer than its northeast side. Often that’s enough for the southwest bark to lose winter hardiness and be susceptible to nighttime freezing. The result can be disfiguring sunscald.
• Today: Cessna Jazz Band (6 to 8:15 p.m.) in the Terrace Room; Heart of America Men’s Chorus (6 to 7 p.m.) in the Children’s Garden
• Sunday: Flatland String Band (6 to 8:15 p.m.) in the Terrace Room
• Monday: Hadley Jazz Band/Orchestra (7 to 8:15 p.m.) in the Terrace Room
• Wednesday: South High School Orchestra (6 to 7 p.m.) in the Terrace Room; Scheer Delights (7:15 to 8:15 p.m.) in the Terrace Room; Lonetree Youth Mennonite Group (7:15 to 8:15 p.m.) in the Children’s Garden.
Refreshments also are available in the Terrace Room, and s’mores over the firepit on the terrace.