Seasonal Care for Trees and Shrubs in Northern U.S. Climates

Welcome to the world of tree care! In the left hand column of the image below, you will find links to the many maintenance duties you can do to help keep your landscape trees healthy and safe. The accompanying chart highlights the most favorable timing for the listed tree care activities. Below this chart you can find links to other complete chart versions that are larger and easier to read.

Overall, periods of weather extremes (e.g., drought or high winds) should be avoided when planting, transplanting, fertilizing and pruning. The information available in this website provides a place to start for tree and shrub care, is not absolute for every situation, and is not intended to endorse any products or services.

Have fun!


More information on each step:

Authored by Rebecca Koetter, Gary R. Johnson, and Dave Hanson: University of Minnesota
Funded in part by USDA Forest Service: Northeastern Area
Chart designed by Andrew Rose:

Download & print your own poster or magnet copy of the “Seasonal Care for Trees and Shrubs in Northern U.S. Climates”

Rebecca works on urban forestry outreach education programs with the Department of Forest Resources in St. Paul.

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    1. Hi Martha. If the ground is frozen, as it is in my yard (Roseville, MN), then watering won’t help your tree. If the ground is unfrozen, it’s not too late to water. But I would not recommend trying to warm or thaw the ground to provide water to the tree.

  1. Is it to early to trim back shrubs because of the warm temperature. We live in rural Andover, MN.
    If it is to early when would be best