Page 1


Tree Care

EXPERT ADVICE ON HOW TO SAVE, REMOVE AND CARE FOR TREES IN YOUR LANDSCAPE River Birch trees with native Virginia Sweetspire. Photo courtesy of Home & Habitat.

Mature trees can provide shade, habitat and an effortless magnificence to a home, neighborhood, even an entire city. Think of the splendid places you visited during travels and here in the Houston area: do you think of trees along great boulevards? Trees at parks and universities? Trees on the grounds of historic homes? Trees of many sizes and shapes grow quite easily all over Houston, that is, provided our area receives its typical amount of rainfall. The past year’s severe drought took a great toll on the tree population across Houston and Texas. How can homeowners determine when a tree is truly dead and what’s the best way to remove a tree? Can a tree look dead, but still come back in the spring or summer? We asked Barry J. Ward, Executive Director of Trees for Houston, these tree-related questions to help readers save existing trees and make smart choices for planting and caring for new trees. Here are his expert responses. 64

1. How can a homeowner or neighborhood volunteer know when a drought-damaged tree cannot be saved?

During the winter, use a small, sharp knife to peel away the outer-most layer of bark. If it is green underneath, then it is still alive. Also, small peripheral branches should be flexible. If they snap, they are dead. The problem with stressed trees is that trees, unlike humans, can be mostly or partially dead. The key is knowing when to give up the fight. 2. Can a tree that looks dead be revived? Are there signs to look for? Steps to take?

Yes, but generally speaking, trees in this condition tend to not look as good even if they do come back. If the majority of, or even a few, primary peripheral branches die, the tree may never regain the classic, species-specific look you want. The key is to water well during the hot, dry months; don’t over-water during the winter. Most of our local varieties can drop leaves once over the course of a summer due to stress

house& home | F e b r u a r y 2 0 1 2 | h o u s e a n d h o m e o n l i n e . com

Houston’s Largest Selection of FRAMED MIRRORS, plus Ready-Made Frames • Custom Framing • Quality Oil Paintings • Hand Carved Frames Family Owned and Operated for Over 27 Years

3815 Fondren Rd.

(Between Richmond & Westpark) Open To The Public & Trade • Mon-Fri 10-6, Sat 10-5 CONSIGNMENTS FINE FURNISHINGS ESTATE FINDS • ANTIQUES


BEAUTIFUL POOLS at affordable prices

9,000 Square Foot Showroom Open 7 Days Per Week New Inventory Arrives Daily


POOLS & SPAS Office . . . . . .713.559.1100 Houston • Dallas • Austin

5200 Louetta Road, Suite 138, Spring, Texas 77379 • 281-370-4447

CenturyGlass &Interiors Hein Lam Furniture “Where quality, service and price make a difference” Phone: (713) 523-0810

Interior Decorating • Draperies •Bedding • Fine Furniture Unique Showroom • Art • Gifts • Acessories

Fax: (713) 523-8610 819 W, Drew St. Houston, TX 77006

2007 South Main • Missouri City 281.499.9570 •

Visit our showroom Mon.-Sat. 8:00a.m.-6:00p.m. 65


Landscaper David Morello planted Quercus macrocarpa (Burr Oak) trees along the roadway by his home in the Heights. Photos this page by Acker/Zvonkovic.

and make it back. A second die off will usually be fatal or cause irreversible harm. 3. If a tree cannot be saved, how should Houstonians go about removing dead trees? If hiring professionals, what are questions to ask and practices that should be insisted upon?

Only hire a licensed, bonded arborist. Tree removal can risky for both the worker and surrounding structure. Training in tree care, tree removal, tree climbing, etc., are all part of the licensure and insurance bonding process. This will not guarantee a great job on your tree, but at least you will be starting with a minimum level of competence. Ask yourself, “Will this company make good if they drop a tree through my roof? Will they have insurance if there is an accident with a chain saw or 5 tons of falling lumber?� Accidents are uncommon, but they tend toward the serious/fatal end of the spectrum! 4. Do you know of good resources and options for repurposing trees or limbs debris? Are there local drop-offs for tree waste? Can homeowners have their tree waste converted into mulch?

For the scale of the individual homeowner, the best option is to simply ask the tree removal company to mulch it right at your home and leave it with you. 66

house& home | F e b r u a r y 2 0 1 2 | h o u s e a n d h o m e o n l i n e . com

10060 West Road #203 Houston, 77064 Open Mon-Fri 9am-5pm

713.861.2081 We also refinish: • Garage Doors • Shutters • Window Frames


SAVE 50 Serving San Antonio and Austin • Franchise Opportunities Available Beautifying your neighborhood one door at a time!

R ICK’S FFRONT RONT D OOR RICK’S DOOR R E F I N I S H I N G REFINISHING Why are we THE BEST on-site door refinishing company in Houston?


• Mobile refinishing shops • Professionally trained refinishers • On-site Door refinishing • 1-day Service • Because we try harder!

Visit to see current Special Offers!

Take an ordinary journey to an extraordinary place

The Arbor Gate 15635 FM 2920 • Tomball, Texas 77377 • 281-351-8851

A.G.WELDING Custom designed ornamental iron stair and balcony railings, staircases, gates, carports, awnings, and structural iron work.

Free estimates Residential & Commercial 8125 McGee Ln • Houston, TX 77071 713-988-4200 • 67

project 5. What are some recommended species to replace lost trees? Please give several types in both large and small sizes.

Note: This list is not comprehensive, but names large and small trees that survived the historic 2011 drought with very little or no supplemental watering. For a comprehensive list of recommended trees, see DROUGHT TOLERANT LARGE NATIVE TREES RECOMMENDED FOR THE HOUSTON AREA

1. Carya illinoenses - Pecan 2. Quercus macrocarpa -Burr Oak 3. Quercus virginiana - Live Oak 4. Taxodium mucronatum - Montezuma Bald Cypress (few or no knees) 5. Ulmus alata - Winged Elm 6. Ulmus crassifolia - Cedar Elm 7. Platamus occidentalis - American Sycamore 8. Juniperus virginiana - Eastern Red Cedar 9. Quercus stellata - Post Oak DROUGHT TOLERANT SMALL NATIVE TREES RECOMMENDED FOR THE HOUSTON AREA

1. Cercis canadensis - Eastern Redbud 2. Cordia boissieri - Anacahuite – Texas Wild Olive 3. Crataegus marshallii - Parsley Hawthorn 4. Ilex decidua - Possumhaw - Deciduous holly 5. Ilex opaca - American Holly LEFT: Montezuma Bald Cypress features feathery green foliage that turns bronze/brown in the winter. Photo by FFprod66 -

River Oaks Quality at National Street Prices


Cabinets in Stock

Fax 713-686-3217

Cabinet Sales, Inc. 1200 National Street Near Downtown Se Habla Español T-F; 8:30-4:00 Sat; 8:30-12:00

4910 W 34th St.

Specializing In Hardwood Lumber, Plywood and Moulding.

Antique Pine, Aromatic Cedar, Ash, B. E. Maple, Basswood, Birch, Bloodwood, Bocote, Bubinga, Cherry, Cocobola, Curly Maple, Cypress, Lacewood, Mahogany, Maple, Mesquite, Mexican Rosewood, Oak, Padouk, Pecan, Purpleheart, Poplar, Spanish Cedar, Sycamore, Teak, Walnut, Wenge, Zebrawood and More Quality Domestic & Imported Plywood (Interior & Marine) Edgebanding & Veneer Sheets • Butcher Block Tops Flooring • Moulding • MDF & Melamine


R U B I N ’ S Custom Rugs and Fine Carpet

Custom Rug Work Room Wall-to-Wall Carpet

Binding Service

3130 Rogerdale Rd., Suite 150 •

7 1 3 .7 8 4 .1 1 8 0 68


house& home | F e b r u a r y 2 0 1 2 | h o u s e a n d h o m e o n l i n e . com

On-Site Custom Moulding & Planing Open 7:30-5:00 M-F; 8:30-12:00 Sat.

713-661-9222 “A full service company for the flag flyer.”

STOP being afraid to look down.

Olympic Pools & Conroe Spas Since 1982, Olympic Pools and Conroe Spa Plus have been serving residents in the Greater Southeast Texas area by providing a wide variety of pool-related products and services at very affordable prices.

• Repairs • Chemical • Weekly Cleaning • Renovations Trim-A-Slab is much easier to install and less expensive than the gooey stuff. Available in black or grey in 50 ft rolls at your local hardware store. Made in the USA.

832-618-3726 A product of the R&D Workshop

1401-A Link Rd. League City, TX 77573

SOOTHING MIND, BODY & SPIRIT Olympic Pools 5814 Schumacher Houston, TX 77057 713-782-6776

Conroe Spas 12801 I-45 South Willis, TX 77318 936-856-0229


project 6. Ilex vomitoria - Yaupon Holly 7. Myrica cerifera - Southern Wax Myrtle 8. Prunus mexicana - Mexican Plum 9. Viburnum rufidulum - Rusty Blackhaw Vibernum 10. Ungnadia speciosa - Mexican Buckeye 6. What are some key tips for caring for newly planted trees? WATERING

Root development is the primary concern in caring for your newly planted tree. It is essential to maintain the proper moisture level in the root zone to keep all roots alive and encourage growth. Improper watering will stunt the growth of a tree and eventually kill it. Note: The most common cause of plant loss in the Houston area is improper watering. Symptoms associated with inadequate watering are browning edges of the leaves, wilting and leaf drop. Unfortunately, these are also the symptoms displayed by a tree that is receiving too much water or insufficient oxygen in the root zone to allow the tree to respire and take up the water by the roots. It is best to water your newly planted tree daily, but in moderate amounts. Please refer to the watering table for your tree type and size. Also, keep a 2-inch layer of mulch around the root ball; DO NOT create a mound of mulch stacked up against the tree! The bare branches of Redbud trees sprout tiny purple/pink flowers in early spring, followed by heart-shaped leaves by early summer. Photograph by Mark Ross -

Over 100 species of hardwoods, softwoods and exotic woods.

713-862-6628 Fax:


Over 50 years of quality and dependable service. Large and Small jobs.



White Oak

E. 5 1/2




Hours Mon.- Fri. 7:30-5:00 Sat. 9:00-1:00

Houston’s oldest and largest hardwood lumber company.

OFFERING: • Custom Millwork • Mouldings • Plywoods • Veneers • Hand tools • Books and Supplies



SERVICING: Cabinet Shops • Home Craftsman • Remodelers • Furniture Makers • Home Builders •


700 E. 5 1/2 Street (In the Heights) •

We Stock Integral Colors! Color Hardeners • Releases • Acid Stains Premium Sealers • Polyurethanes • Counter Top Mix Self Leveling Overlays • Stamps • Tools Training & Support • Seminars • Furniture Molds

Come See Our


Serving Texas and the U.S.

8310 Castleford St. #250 • Houston, TX 77040 713-462-8884 • 70

house& home | F e b r u a r y 2 0 1 2 | h o u s e a n d h o m e o n l i n e . com

National Wood Flooring Association

713-977-6382 3416 Fondren Rd • Se Habla Español

Home Furnishings





11330 Northwest Freeway Houston, TX 77092 (290 West b/t 34th & Antoine) 713.957.0003 Phone 713.957.1450 fax M-F 10-6:30 • Sat 10-6

w w w. m a x i m u m f u r n i t u r e . c o m

I All Dove Tail

Construction I Great for

Pantries, Cabinets or Bathrooms I Patented All

Steel Mounting with 100 lb. Capacity I Custom Build

to Fit Cabinets I Center Post

Removal Service

FREE In Home Estimates Lifetime Warranty

(281) 313-3434

Replace your plain window with a Custom Glass Block Window

Glass Block Windows and Showers Glass Flooring Systems 9363 Winkler Drive • Houston, TX 77017 713-944-9716 • 713-944-1723 fax 71


Fertilizing a newly planted container grown tree is best accomplished by top dressing with a time released fertilizer, applied in early spring. This should be done for the first three years after planting. 7. When and how can residents purchase trees from Trees for Houston? Are there other local sources for new trees that your recommend?

Trees can be obtained from TFH year round; anything we can’t provide we can generally help people find through reputable growers. CLASSES



Trees for Houston hosts Urban ForesTree Keeper adult education classes are held each year in the early fall. Check their site, for dates. LEARN BY DOING: VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES

Trees for Houston, Hermann Park Conservancy, Memorial Park Conservancy, Houston Arboretum,

The glorious spreading branches—and roots—of live Oaks are best suited for wide open areas. Photograph by RalfenByte -


One who arranges detail, form & color

• Complete Bathroom Remodeling • Shower enclosures with Shower Guard & warranty • Tabletop Glass • Mirrors • Window Glass

Residential & Commercial Design • Remodeling concept to completion (Insured, Lloyd’s of London)

• Low budget room makeovers...Staging for resale (Using existing furnishings)

• Custom furniture, upholstery, window treatments • Curb appeal: Exterior elevation modification, landscape design TX Lic.#811180 ACR-2242

7070 Mayard Rd. #C Houston, TX 77041

Oni Roberts

Now Licensed to Design Security Systems


281-655-4288 •

Antiques on Memorial a collection of Fine Shops 7000 sq. ft. Showroom Featuring Furniture, Silver, Ironstone, Transferware, Linens, Jewelry, China Matching

Unique Gifts fhr Your Sweetheart 14034 Memorial Dr. Houston, TX 77079

(281) 920-9424 Mon-Sat. 10AM-6PM • Sun. 12AM-5PM Located at Memorial & Kirkwood


You Break’em... We’ll Fix’em! Window Coverings: Blinds Pickup & Delivery Shades Available Shutters Most repairs can be made on-site

City Blind Repair 713.664.0444

house& home | F e b r u a r y 2 0 1 2 | h o u s e a n d h o m e o n l i n e . com



Kitchen & Bath Specialist

Aluminum & Composition



Call George @ 281-685-8657 •


Elegant Custom Trees & Floral Designs Daily Discounts Decorative Accessories, Faux Tin Art, and Containers of all Varieties, In-Store for that Special Need.


50% OFF

Over 20 Years of Experience on Residential & Commercial Properties. • Dramatic Uplighting • Delicate Moonlighting • Feature Lighting

• Tree Lighting • Low Voltage Lighting • Security Lighting

• Accent Lighting • Mosquito Misting • Maintenance

12703-A Cutten So., Houston, TX 77066 (S. of 1960 at Willowbrook Mall or 249)


DESIGN & ESTIMATE 9-6 Mon-Fri • 10-5 Sat




% 0 5 E V SAon Installation

ea’s your ar lled in for details ta s in n ll * Whe uled day. Ca 9/12 sched Expires 2/2

See more makeovers at:

• Average makeovers from $150 to $250 • Conceal black edges on aging mirrors • Wide selection of frame styles Call Now to Schedule your

Complimentary Design Consultation! * Conditions apply. Call for details

281-305-4555 Or Schedule Online: Have questions? Ask us at: 73


Soil conditions and available water can make all the difference for a tree’s survival. Photograph by finnegan -


“Armor Your Glass” 24/7 against:

• BURGLARS & VANDALS (Same System Used at the Pentegon) • HIGH ENERGY BILLS (Reduces Solar Heat & UV Rays) • HURRICANES (No More Need to Board Up Your Windows) Armor Glass International, Inc 12926 Dairy Ashford, #100 Sugar Land, TX 77478 713-213-5080 74

house& home | F e b r u a r y 2 0 1 2 | h o u s e a n d h o m e o n l i n e . com

Texas Stone Construction • Flagstone Patios • Stained Concrete • Stamped Concrete • Wood Arbors

• Firepits • Stone Columns • Pavers • Waterfalls • Tile & Coping • Stone Benches • Fireplaces FREE ESTIMATES





Seeking Experienced


REQUIREMENTS • Aggressive prospecting techniques • Proven track record in Advertising Sales • Stable employment history • Self-motivation with a positive attitude • Enjoy a team environment • Basic computer skills

Qualified applicants should send resumes to or fax to 713.880.5811 75


2.Can a tree that looks dead be revived? Are there signs to look for? Steps to take? 1.How can a homeowner or neighborhood volunteer know wh...


2.Can a tree that looks dead be revived? Are there signs to look for? Steps to take? 1.How can a homeowner or neighborhood volunteer know wh...