Tree Care Tips

Some helpful hints on selecting, planting and maintaining trees...

Selecting a tree

Trees add beauty and so much more.

  • Reduce your heating and cooling costs.
  • Help clean the air.
  • Adds value and character to your home.

Choosing a tree should be a well thought-out decision. Proper selection can provide you with years of enjoyment. It can also significantly increase your property value.

Some questions to consider in selecting and planting a tree includes:

Park Tree Planting

  • What space is available?
  • Where are your underground pipes?
  • What trees can be planted in shade?
  • What kind of trees are flowering?


The ideal time to plant your tree is during the dormant season. In Saanich, that is generally November through March. Proper care before, during and after planting is important to minimize transplant shock. 


Mulch is valuable for your tree’s health and care, for many reasons:

  • Moderates soil temperatures;
  • Conserves moisture;
  • Supresses weeds;
  • Prevents soil compaction;
  • Enriches the soil;
  • Reduces lawn mower damage.


During the summer months, we ask residents to water trees regularly to keep them healthy.

Young trees (up to 5 years old) need sufficient water during dry periods to survive and develop into healthy specimens. Lack of water results in underdeveloped trees or trees vulnerable to pests and diseases.

Tree Watering Tips

  • Water trees during cooler times of the day so the trees will soak up more water.
  • Give enough water to soak into the roots by watering the base of your tree at least twice per week for 15-minutes, or about 20 litres, each watering. Water slowly to give the water time to soak into the ground and reach the roots. If you rush, the water will flow away from the tree along the ground’s surface.
  • Maintain a circle around the base of the tree (but not touching the tree trunk) with wood chips, grass clippings or compost to help keep the soil moist and reduce damage by mowers or weed whackers.
  • Water even if it rains. The small amount of rain we get in the summer is not enough for our trees; they still need our help (especially if they are young trees).
  • Please water even during sprinkling restrictions. Hand watering newly planted trees is exempt from water restrictions or bans, so keep watering your trees all summer long!

Tree watering bags

You will find watering bags on many newly planted trees on Saanich boulevards and in parks during the warmer months. If there is a bag on a tree near your house please fill it up twice a week. Watering bags are also available for purchase at many local garden centres to use on your own trees!


Regular pruning and removing of any dead wood helps maintain the health of your tree. We recommend following ISA guidelines or use a ISA certified arborist. Make sure you follow any rules of a convenant you may have on your property and if required obtain a tree cutting permit!