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How to Fix an Overwatered Tulip Tree


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Overwatering your trees and plants can lead to root rot that will destroy your garden rather than help it thrive. Tulip trees, or liriodendron tulipifera, employ the use of a water well around the base of the tree to help distribute water to the outer edges of the plant and roots, encouraging the roots to spread outward. Too much water will pool inside the well and begin to rot the base of the tree and the roots. In the event that you overwater your tulip tree, there are things you can do to remedy the situation before it is too late.

Difficulty:
Moderately Easy

Instructions

Things You’ll Need
  • Mulch
    1. Cut back on how often you water your tulip trees. Tulip trees need only about 1 inch of water per week, and this watering should be spread out over the week, rather than dumped on all at once.
    2. Do not water if there has been adequate rain.
    3. Apply a layer of mulch inside the water well at the base of the tree. A 3-inch layer will help retain and distribute moisture evenly, so you don’t have to worry about the plant drying out. Mulch will also absorb excess water if you accidentally overwater.
    4. Consider moving the tree to an area with better soil drainage. Dig the tree out carefully, ensuring you don’t damage the rootball while digging, and replant. Be sure to tend the soil with fertilizer and add a layer of mulch.
    5. Plant your tulip tree in full sun. Exposure to the sun all day will help dry out and evaporate excess water in the event that you overwater.

Tips & Warnings

  • Avoid transplanting tulip trees in the fall, as upcoming harsh winter conditions may shock and kill the tree.

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