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What a record breaking hot summer this was - it's wonderful that we're getting some rain this week! As we move into cooler temperatures, it's time to think about preparing your landscape for autumn. Fall is the busiest time of year for our Pruning Department as structural pruning is very important in helping to alleviate major storm damage in both mature and establishing trees. To assure you receive priority in our scheduling, we suggest that you call us this month to get your complimentary evaluation and cost estimate scheduled.

As always, we thank you for your business and continued trust.

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Ralph & Diesel, our shop dog
Thank you,

Ralph Bronk
Ralph Bronk
and the MHT Team

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Dutch Elm Disease
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Pruning your trees
this fall

Fall is the best time of year to prune trees that have related pathogens. Fireblight and Dutch Elm disease are two diseases that have to be taken care of in the dormant season. Many homeowners see the effects of Fireblight in the summer time and become anxious to do something about it, but unfortunately, pruning trees affected by Fireblight during the growing season can make a bad situation even worse. The likelihood of spreading an infection through pruning cuts is high even when special care is taken to clean and sanitize your tools. The dormant season offers a lull in the disease activity and mobility in the environment. The signs and symptoms of Fireblight are also very easy to recognize in the dormant season because the affected tissue often retains the diseased leaf material. Since the rest of the leaves have fallen off it is easier to ensure that more of the pathogen will be removed.

Similarly, pruning our beautiful Elm trees in the dormant season is also ideal. The cold temperatures assure us that the disease is dormant, and likewise the vectoring insect is also not present. When spring comes the trees have time to begin healing the wounds created during the pruning before the beetles begin to spread the disease again. The healthier the trees are, the less likely they are to be attacked by the beetles and infected by Dutch Elm disease.

The list of ideal trees for fall and winter pruning includes: Apple, Crabapple, Elm, Peach, Pear, and Cherry, to name a few. In addition to fall being ideal for disease related pruning, it is also the best time to prepare your trees for the harsh winter storms that are sure to come. It is important to meet with your Arborist in order to assess the health of your plants and formulate a plan for the fall season. Discounts are also in place to save you money by performing pruning operations in the winter season.

Pruning in fall is also a valuable practice to reduce the likelihood of storm damage. October makes us think of candy and Halloween, but as we all know, we can be trick-or-treating in shorts or snow shoes. It is a common for heavy snow storms to show up in early fall and cause severe damage to our trees. Storm damage is often so severe that it forces the complete removal of many trees. Pruning in fall to promote the best limb structure possible will keep the trees balanced and strong to help them withstand whatever Mother Nature can throw at them.

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Summer Dormancy

Yard recovery this fall

Given the very long and hot summer we have had, many lawns have areas of drought stress and/or dormant grass. Just like winter dormancy, summer dormancy involves a loss of green color.

The question is: What are appropriate strategies for water management when extended drying conditions arrive?

First, consider the health of the turf prior to the drought. Even irrigated turf grass growth will slow (possibly accompanied by some color loss) under extreme drought duress, but remember, most grasses are adapted to these types of conditions and they almost always survive. What condition was your lawn before moisture stress arrived? If you are fortunate enough to have great soil and overall good growing conditions that produce a reasonably healthy lawn, then a suitable management strategy is simply to keep off the lawn and wait for more rain and cooler temperatures. These yards can expect a quick rebound in greening when the heat and drought finally fades. Established turfgrasses are amazingly persistent under low moisture conditions and require less water to survive than trees and most other ornamental landscape plants. However, the Front Range of Colorado seldom provides for such ideal soil conditions. Because of this, the question for most homeowners is ‟what if my turf was already struggling or I have poor soil before the drought arrived? ”

For this situation, extra water during the drought is key to keeping the turf healthy enough to withstand the drought. Turf with a very weak root system and/or poor soil does not have the ability to withstand extreme moisture duress. The standard rule of thumb is to apply 1” of water per week which is suitable for most yards to maintain a level of health to be able to pull out of semi dormancy, but during extreme drying periods, even this amount of water is likely not enough. If yards didn’t get enough water over this long hot summer some areas may be slow to recover and others may need some spot seeding or sodding.

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Emergence of Green Tissue

How do you know if the turf is going to recover?

Within a few days of steady cooler weather and/or rainfall, brush away the tops of the brown leaves and look deeper, past the brown/dormant tips. Recovery will be indicated by seeing two things:

  1. Emergence of green tissue at the base of brown leaves on the surface.
  2. New leaves emerging from the growing points of the plant.
    Note: This can be done by lightly pulling the grass apart and looking for the new growth.

This leads into the most important question: What can you do for the rest of the summer to help your lawn?

First and foremost, keep mowing heights high (3+”) and stay off the turf as much as possible. Even foot traffic over a drought stressed area can badly damage grass trying to hang on. If you lose grass (and in this climate, that is always a possibility) be prepared for reestablishment this fall by reviewing and choosing a blend suited for your area and your yard. Do understand that if you want to seed or sod some spots, daily watering will be needed for three to four weeks. Just make sure you are able to do this required watering before putting forth the money, time, and effort for such a project.

Zimmer Back Yard Project:

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This property is located off of Kipling Pkwy in Lakewood and features a very nicely sized back yard with loads of potential. Recognizing this potential, the homeowners contacted our sales/design department to discuss how to get the most out of the space. The ultimate goal for the back yard was to have an enlarged area for entertaining and needed to include a new deck with a built in hot-tub, fire pit, BBQ area, a large paver patio, and a new shed for some additional storage. With these elements in mind, the homeowners and our design representative were able to implement a landscape plan that included everything on the clients' wish list while remaining within their budget. The initial design was contracted and we began their makeover. Once the construction was underway and the initial plan began to take shape, the clients unexpectedly increased the budget and requested that some additional elements be added to the landscape; including a new 6' cedar privacy fence and a low-voltage outdoor lighting system to accent some of the new features in the yard. The plan was quickly and easily revised to accommodate these items and the crew is currently putting the finishing touches on the project. Check out next month's issue of Tree Top Times to see this lovely makeover completed.

Call our Design team to see what we can
do for your landscape at 303.457.5857

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Danielle Sandoval
Get to know us!

Danielle Sandoval

Danielle started with Mountain High Tree, Lawn & Landscape as a temporary accounting assistant. We were so impressed with her progress and work ethic we offered her a position on our team in July. She supports the Accounts Payable and of course Accounts Receivables. When Danielle is not working with numbers and handling the company's money, she enjoys spending time with her 11 year old daughter Alina, family and friends. Danielle also loves to make people smile and laugh. If you are having a bad day, Danielle can cheer you up with her lovely smile. Truly, that smile is contagious! Please join us in welcoming Danielle to the Mountain High family.

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Mountain High Tree,
Lawn & Landscape

5717 W. 11th Ave.
Lakewood, CO, 80214

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Mountain High Tree
Care & Consulting


3450 Astrozon Place
Colorado Springs, CO 80910

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from Craig Little
Craig LittleTip of the Month:

Many clients have been noticing the presence of various "leaf spot fungi" on several of their landscape trees. This time of year we see the end result of many leaf infections that started back in the spring. Some of the most frequently infected trees are the Aspen, Cottonwoods, Crabapples, Apples and Pears. Leaf Spot fungi includes a huge number of species that ultimately infect and damage leaf tissue. Though mostly superficial in the damage they do, they can cause unneeded stress during a season when the hot and dry conditions are stressful enough for our trees. A thorough cleanup in the fall of the infected leaf tissue helps a great deal to keep new infections from starting in the spring. Some infection is inevitable, but there are also fungicide applications that are available to help provide a line of defense during periods of infection in the spring and summer.

Project Design Services

SAVE 50% on your
Design Service Fee

Call our team today for a complimentary consultation on creating the yard of your dreams.

Expires 9/30/12
New Customers please.


Lawn Aeration Special
Do to the extreme heat, we recommend that you aerate your lawn this fall.

Call us now and schedule to Save $5 on your Fall Lawn Aeration.

Expires 9/30/12
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Refer a Friend & get $10

Every month, we will select a winner for a $10 B.U.D. gift card. Take a moment and tell us what you think about our service. You will find a customer survey enclosed with your invoice or email us at

Jim, Lakewood
"Expert recommendation and prompt professional service."
Customer since 1998

"A job well done."
Al, Greenwood Village

New Customer in 2012

"Professional and friendly crew, excellent clean-up. Very happy."
Kate, Littleton

Customer since 2006

"Excellent service and involvement of the owner."
Nancy, Lakewood

Customer for over 17 years

"Great service. Very professional."
Elizabeth, Denver

Customer since 2010


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Mountain High Tree, Lawn & Landscape | 5717 W. 11th Ave. | Lakewood, Colorado | 80214 | 303.232.0666
Mountain High Tree Service & Consulting
| 3450 Astrozon Pl. | Colorado Springs, Colorado | 80910 | 719-444-8800
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