How do trees get nutrients? These plants can reach towering heights and live for hundreds of years, so it’s logical to wonder what sustains them.

As one of Boerne’s arborist crews, we at Rockoff Tree Solutions have an in-depth understanding of a tree’s many biological processes. Keep reading as we break down the nitty-gritty details and help you learn more about your beloved specimens.

It All Comes From the Natural Environment

Trees get their nutrition from two places: the soil and air. The former supplies the essential minerals potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorus, while the latter serves as a source of carbon dioxide and oxygen.

Plants rely on water in the soil to carry the nutrients up to the root system and throughout the top structure. Roots have thin, hairlike strands called feeder roots designed to efficiently absorb moisture and minerals. To get what they need from the air, trees use the small openings in their leaves called stomata.

How They Turn These Components Into Food

After gathering the “ingredients,” trees “cook” their food through a process called photosynthesis. This complex system uses light energy from the sun to turn carbon dioxide and water into carbohydrates and other organic compounds. These products provide trees with a source of energy they need to grow and carry out everyday functions, as well as vital chemicals for making structural components like cellulose fibers.

Top Signs Your Tree Lacks the Nutrients to Survive

Now that you know the answer to the question, “How do trees get nutrients?” do your specimens have what they need to thrive? Watch out for common red flags such as:

  • Fading or pale green leaves
  • Missing foliage or a sparse canopy
  • Stunted growth or weak branches
  • Blackened tips on the foliage
  • The tree is susceptible to fungal infections and pest infestations

What to Do Next

Most trees are fairly self-sufficient when it comes to nutrition management, but some need a little human intervention. Here are some possible strategies to aid an ailing plant.

Soil Treatments

Dense, clay-rich soils don’t allow air and water to move from the roots to the leaves as effectively. Loosening up the ground around the root zone or adding looser materials can help alleviate this problem.

Fertilizers Are Your Friend

Whether your soil has nutrition deficiencies or you just want to provide an extra boost during stressful times like drought, apply organic fertilizers like manure and soybean meal. Depending on its symptoms, your tree may also need specific minerals like zinc or magnesium.

Water When Necessary

Does your area experience extended dry spells? Give your trees a deep drink every once in a while, and consider mulching the surrounding soil for moisture retention.

Weed Out the Competition

Unwanted plants growing near your trees compete for vital resources; remove them before they have a chance to establish deep root systems and spread their seeds!

Let an Expert Do the Heavy Lifting for You

We understand how distressing it might feel to see your beloved tree species wilt and struggle. With so many possible causes, it can prove challenging to narrow down the culprit without a bit of help. This is where we come in.

Rockoff Tree Solutions has looked after the yards and gardens of Texas residents for over two decades. Our specialists know exactly how to:

  • Assess the general health of your tree
  • Determine the underlying cause of its declining condition
  • Devise a tailor-fit care plan
  • Recommend preventative measures to keep it vigorous
  • And more

Don’t risk the health of your prized plants; call Rockoff Tree Solutions at 830-955-0304 for deep root injections, thorough soil aeration sessions, and more. We hope we’ve thoroughly explained the gardener’s common concern, “How do trees get nutrients?”