The Truckee Meadows Community Forestry Coalition, a conservation effort brought to you by the water lovers at Truckee Meadows Water Authority, aim to maintain and build our community forest. Proper tree care, like any plant in your yard, begins with Weather-Wise Watering to build a deep, strong root system.

What is deep root feeding?

Deep root feeding injects water, oxygen, fertilizers, insecticides and other soil enhancers directly into a tree’s root zone, which is where most nutrients are absorbed. Here in the Truckee Meadows, where soils are typically compacted, this process breaks up the soil, creating an easier path for air, water and nutrients to get to the root zone.

Benefits of using a root feeder:

  • It is more efficient than surface watering because it feeds only the tree, not weeds that may be growing on the surface.

  • Deep root watering (without fertilizers) in between feedings, as often as once every week or two, can help water reach the root zone.

  • It stimulates plants that have been stressed by disease, insects or drought.

  • It’s environmentally friendly because it reduces erosion, evaporation and fertilizer run-off.

How to use:

1. If you are fertilizing, add a Ross Root Feeder fertilizer cartridge to the chamber if you wish to fertilize and attach your garden hose. If you are not fertilizing, skip to step 2.

2. Turn your hose on and insert the root feeder six to 12 inches deep, about every three to five feet at your tree’s drip line.

3. Leave the feeder in the ground for about a minute (or less if water pools to the surface) to ensure the roots receive plenty of water and fertilizer.

4. Fertilize three times per year for each of your trees, at the beginning of spring, summer and fall.

5. To prevent clogging, flush the feeder tube by running water slightly after removing from the soil.

For more information visit us at www.communityforestry.org or call TMWA's conservation department at 775-834-8005.


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