What Are the 3 Tree Nutrients Important for Growth? A Guide for Lake Oswego Residents

Just like humans, trees require a balanced diet to thrive. Still, adding just any fertilizer to the soil won’t be helpful if you don’t have just the right balance of nutrients to complement what your tree lacks. Thankfully, by learning about the essential tree nutrients, any tree owner can meet the dietary needs of these plants from season to season. 

Evergreen Tree Services, Lake Oswego’s top tree service specialists, shares what you need to know about optimal soil nutrition for trees.

The Three Nutrients Trees Need Most

Did you know the most essential tree nutrients come from the sun, water, and air? Trees absorb the nutrients these elements provide through the roots and leaves. Tree leaves do this by conducting photosynthesis to convert nutrients from the sun, while tree roots absorb underground water and minerals. 

The size of trees means they need a lot to survive and a balanced tree diet includes the following nutrients:

#1 Nitrogen

Nitrogen makes up a large portion of our atmosphere, but also features in many proteins, amino acids, bases, and chlorophyll. The element is a key component of the photosynthesis process for trees, as it helps plants convert sunlight, soil, and water into tree food. 

Nitrogen is best known for helping trees grow their leaves because it stimulates the production of chlorophyll. This element underscores the vibrant green color on tree leaves.

#2 Phosphorus

The second key mineral in human human foods and tree health supplements is phosphorus. This essential nutrient helps tree roots adequately absorb minerals from soil and water so that the plant can recover from damage. Phosphorus: 

  • Reduces plant vulnerability.
  • Increases tree strength.
  • Plays a role in the production of tree flowers, fruits, and seeds.

Like nitrogen, phosphorus also helps trees conduct photosynthesis. In fact, without phosphorus, trees would not be able to convert sunlight into energy for growth. 

#3 Potassium

We commonly think of potassium in fruits and vegetables, which makes sense given the fact that trees need this mineral to produce fruit. With adequate potassium, trees yield plump fruits. These tree nutrients also afford the structure more protection from diseases and cold.

If your trees need a little help with absorbing water and streamlining the photosynthesis process, adding potassium may help.

Other Supplemental Nutrients for Trees

Aside from nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, trees still require dozens of nutrients to thrive. Typically, nutrient-rich soil for trees contains:

  • Calcium.
  • Magnesium.
  • Sulfur.
  • Boron.
  • Copper.
  • Chloride.
  • Manganese.
  • Zinc.
  • And more.

How Arborists Treat Nutrient Deficiencies in Trees

Do you think your tree may have a nutrient deficiency? An arborist may test the soil and then recommend treating it by adding fertilizer or:

  • Egg shells.
  • Banana peels.
  • Coffee grounds.
  • Other organic materials.

A certified arborist understands these tree fertilizer requirements in-depth. Since not all nutrient-deficient trees require the same treatments, it’s best to consult a professional.

Call a Certified Arborist in Lake Oswego Today

How deep do tree roots go? What’s the perfect balance of tree nutrients in Lake Oswego? Find answers to all your questions from the certified arborists at Evergreen Tree Services–call (503) 625-4595 today!

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