New trees were planted along 30th Street in April, and I thought we were supposed to be watering our new trees every week.
So I was surprised to see the water truck last week.
The guy watering our trees told me that they will be watering every two weeks for five months. I emailed Vera Ertem, an arborist with the Urban Forestry Administration within the DC Department of Transportation. She manages the trees in our area, and she confirmed that the truck will be coming around every two weeks through September.
Even so, the general rule is that we should be watering every week unless we get a steady rain for a couple of hours. A brief downpour does not count. If you are not sure, Vera suggests the touch test. If the ground is dry under the mulch around the tree, you need to water with a hose long enough to reach those green bags surrounding each of our new trees. You fill these water bags, which slowly release water over four to five hours. It can be a hassle, but taking care of what we have is often a hassle, and these are our trees.
I must admit this is much easier than the job of watering the new trees we put in at the Murch playground in the early 90’s. Sally Gresham got a bunch of us to volunteer. I think it took a good one and a-half hours, if not more (and I am sure she will correct me if I got this wrong), to water all the trees. I took a good book.
If this will be difficult for you, ask a neighbor to help you out. And if you can help your next-door neighbor, please let them know. Let’s keep our new street trees thriving through the summer.