Can You Prune Trees in Winter?

Now that the holidays are all over, all that’s left until Valentine’s and St. Pat’s is the winter season. Fortunately, that gives us plenty of time to get around to our other homeowner duties, like tree care. Right now is the perfect time to prune your landscaping trees if you want to ensure strong and abundant growth next season. However, many are afraid to do too much with their dormant trees this time of year in fear that they may do some damage. The truth is, tree dormancy is the best time to prune trees.

Continue reading to learn why, and for some more winter tree care pruning tips you will need.

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Trimming vs. Pruning

There are many reasons to trim a tree. Trimming down foliage and branches can eliminate obstacles and obstructions, improve look, produce ornamental appeal, and deliver certain functions, like privacy or shade. However, tree pruning is another story. The purpose of pruning trees is to jump start spring growth spurts, as well as, render fuller, brighter, more balanced growth.

When to Prune

The best time to prune a tree is in winter when they are dormant and have little to no foliage. Not only does this allow better manageability, bark and tissue wounds recover faster, far before new growth can begin. In spring and summer when tree growth is active, open wounds from pruning are at higher risk of developing infections, pest infestations, and more. These developments can quickly cause a full decline in tree health, even with treatment. Furthermore, trees require more water when they are healing, which can make spring or summer pruning problematic since the tree is active and already needs water. This might leave a tree without enough water.

How to Prune

Pruning is a delicate practice that requires astute knowledge and skill that is only achievable through years of experience. For this reason, you need a professional and seasoned Indianapolis tree care contractor to prune trees properly. A single incorrect cut can cause an entire tree to die, making professional service non-negotiable.

Indianapolis Tree Care and Pruning Service

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for professional Indianapolis tree trimming and pruning services you can trust. We are an experienced and reputable Central Indiana tree care company that offers a wide range of tree services for both residential and commercial properties, including tree removal, stump removal, lot clearing, and more. We even offer free estimates and free tree care advice!

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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Common Winter Tree Pests in Indiana

Although the majority of insects and similar pests turn in for the winter season, that does not mean they have disappeared. In fact, many species of bugs will brave the cold, harsh climates. Unfortunately, this puts our landscaping trees at risk since winter insects commonly target them for food and shelter.

If you are concerned about the quality and protection of your trees, continue reading to learn which winter tree pests to watch out for, as well as, how to treat or prevent them next year.

Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518

Red Spider Mites

Although they are also very active in fall and spring, red spider mites are still something to look out for in the winter season. What really makes them a nuisance is their omnivorous appetite, as they will feed on a wide variety of plants and shrubs. However, apple trees are their main love, and they target them quite aggressively this time of year. Any crevices near the bottom of the tree’s trunk are where the spider mites like to hang out during the winter.

Here they will hide until the climate warms up. Because of this innate habit of survival, it is difficult to spot a red spider mite infestation. They are very tiny, resembling small red speckles of dust, and will spin webs just like other spiders. Look for these signs if you suspect an outbreak within your landscaping. Fortunately, they are a bit easier to get rid this time of year because they are not reproducing as rapidly.

Aphids

Aphids are trickier winter tree pests since there are more than 4,000 known species around the world. This makes them harder to identify, which in turn, leaves many tree infestations misdiagnosed and mistreated. Furthermore, their high numbers allow their hordes to surmount a plant quickly. Their eggs are laid in the fall, and remain dormant within trees during the winter season. As a result, trees can experience a rapid decline in health and structural integrity.

Codling Moth Grubs

If you can picture a worm crawling out of an apple, like in those fairytale movies you used to watch as a kid, you might be imagining a codling moth grub. That is because these common winter tree pests target fruit trees, including apple trees, pear trees, and cherry trees. Like spider mites, they will enter the tiny crevices and hide away for the winter, which overall, damages a tree.

How to Treat and Defend Your Trees

There are plenty of ways to prevent pest outbreaks in your trees. The most effective method is routine tree care, namely trimming and pruning. This promotes healthy growth and lasting stability in trees. See our blog, “When is it Time to Trim My Trees?” to learn how to develop a routine schedule for your property. Weeding and mulching are two additional tasks that will make identifying pests easier.

You can also choose to apply a spray-on pest defender repellent on your trees in the fall for winter protection. Be sure to hire a professional company for tree spraying services. Another technique is to apply glue around your trees in the form of bands, which can prevent insects from crawling up the trunks and into the canopies.

Indianapolis Tree Care You Can Trust

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for prompt and professional Indianapolis tree service you can trust. We are experienced tree care technicians that can resolve your tree problems, regardless of your projects size or scope. We offer a wide range of tree removal and tree services, for both residential and commercial properties. We even offer free estimates and free tree care advice!

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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Oldest Known Fossilized Trees Discovered in New York City

What was once thought to be the oldest known fossilized trees in the world are now second in line! A new discovery recently made in a New York quarry certainly sets a new global record. Continue reading to learn more about this astonishing and portending discovery, including just how old these fascinating ancient fossils are!

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Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518

New York Was Once a Large Ancient Forest

Scientists think they’ve stumbled upon an ancient forest so immense that at one point during the Devonian era, it expanded far past Pennsylvania, and well into the foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Over 3,000 square meters of the forest have been mapped since 2010, and scientists have determined that two types of ancient tree species were native to these regions: Cladoxylopsids and Archaeopteris.

A few months ago, in an abandoned New York quarry, remnants of ancient trees were discovered.  What’s so mind-blowing about this discovery is that these fossilized trees date back more than 386 million years! According to Paleobotanist Chris Berry of Cardiff University, “This is the oldest place where you can wander around and map out where fossil trees were standing back in the middle part of the Devonian era.” “It’s a very ancient forest from the beginnings of the time where the planet was turning green and forests were becoming a normal part of the Earth’s system.”

So why is this discovery so monumental and significant? Well, these ancient tree fossils can help scientists better understand the evolution of trees, including more information on their process of removing carbon dioxide from our planet’s atmosphere. Read the original article from Fox News and view pictures of the fossils, here. To learn more, visit the journal Current Biology to view the entire publication in detail.

Need Tree Service in Indianapolis?

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for Indianapolis tree service at an affordable price. We are highly trained and experienced tree care technicians that offer commercial and residential tree services at affordable prices. Request an estimate or advice anytime. Call 317-783-2518 to learn more about tree care in Indianapolis, today.

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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Will Hanging Christmas Lights Harm My Trees?

We are well into the Christmas season by now, and many homeowners are preparing to decorate their front yards with all their favorite seasonal charm. Those most admired outdoor holiday décorations we look forward to every year are string lighting. Nothing is more amazing than a street filled with brilliant, sparkling holiday lights! But in order to make the best of holiday decorating, it is necessary to hang Christmas lights properly, especially when it comes to trees. Improper stringing and draping of Christmas lights can have adverse effects on your landscaping trees, as well as your house and other surrounding structures.

If you are a holiday décor enthusiast who wishes to string up lights around your house, you might want to review some important tips for hanging Christmas lights on trees. Continue reading to get started!

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Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518

Know Your Lights

There are several different kinds of Christmas lights. The type you are using will have an influence on how you should hang them, so be sure to familiarize yourself with the most common options. Common options include LED, wide-angled LED, incandescent, transparent, globe, ceramic, RGB LED, and net lights.

Have a Plan

Once you are aware of the type of lights you are using outside, begin to plan out your scheme. Determine where you will be adding lights, such as windows, roof edges, doors, and more. Then determine which lights you are going to add and how much. To determine how much length of lighting you need, divide the height of the trunk by the spacing between each strip of lights you will use, about 3 inches is ideal. Next, multiply that number by the trunk’s circumference. From there, you can coordinate a plan for battery power, backups, and of course, fire safety.

Use Net Lighting for Trees

Hanging Christmas lights on trees can be damaging, and lead to broken branches, limb loss, foliage loss, bark damage, and more. For this reason, if you plan to string lights on your outdoor landscaping trees, it is highly recommended to use net lighting. Net lighting are basically large nets covered in lights. They can be easily draped over trees with a simply throw. They are safer for tree branches and foliage since they do not directly attach.

Standard Lights for Trees

If you are sticking with traditional string lights for tree decorating, be sure you follow the best practices for tree protection. A general rule of thumb is to use C7 or C9 sized bulbs and space them around 6 to 8 inches apart. After all, having longer distances between lights will allow more light to spread across a wider area, thus creating more picturesque shadows and warmth.

Indianapolis Tree Care Services You Can Trust

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for professional Indianapolis tree service you can trust. We serve all of Central Indiana with a wide range of skilled tree removal and tree care services, for both residential and commercial properties. Whether you need a single tree removed, or simply require routine tree service, like trimming or pruning, we can deliver prompt and professional service at a fair price. Request a free estimate, today.

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Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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Should I Brace My Trees For Winter?

Tree cabling and bracing is an important preventative maintenance practice used in the landscaping and tree care industry. Many property owners are confused on whether or not they need to brace their trees for the harsh winter weather ahead. Although cabling and bracing offers a wide range of important benefits, it is not necessary for all trees.

Continue reading to learn more about tree cabling and bracing, including when you should implement the service for your landscaping trees.

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Indianapolis Tree Cabling and Bracing 317-783-2518

Tree Cabling and Bracing

The practice of tree cabling and bracing is done for the purpose of reinforcing or redirecting trees. Not only does it prevent unsteady or dead trees from falling over, it can help promote tree growth in certain directions, like out of the way of power lines. During the process, cabling and bracing hardware are installed directly on and around the tree, and then anchored to the ground. This practice still allows the tree to move naturally with the wind, but only to a limit that cannot cause any structural failures. Tree trunks, whole trees, or sections of large limbs can be cabled and braced for preventative maintenance.

Making a Decision to Cable and Brace Trees

Whether or not a tree requires cabling and bracing depends on its condition, health, location, and surrounding environment. Most trees do not require cabling and bracing. It is generally a service reserved for trees that pose hazardous structural failures, such as toppling over or large limbs falling off. Trees that are good candidates for cabling and bracing are those in areas where people and structures exist, such as neighborhoods, communities, commercial buildings, parks, and more. Trees in these areas that exhibit signs of potential instability might benefit from cabling and bracing. In all cases, young and newly-planted trees should be cabled and braced, all year long.

Signs of a Dangerous Tree

Dead trees are usually easy to spot, and commonly cabled and braced since they exponentially lose their strength and root stability. See our blog, “Top 4 Signs That Indicate a Tree is Dead” to learn how to decipher a dead tree from a live one. Accordingly, dying or diseased trees pose the same threat. These trees are often cabled to prevent them from decaying and falling. See our blog, “Common Questions and Answers About Tree Diseases” to learn more. In other cases, trees that are in areas with very bad soil conditions or poor water drainage can be very unstable, and potentially fall over in rough winds or storms. For this reason, they are also good candidates for cabling and bracing.

Get a Tree Inspection to Be Sure This Winter

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for comprehensive tree inspection services in Indianapolis, Indiana and surrounding locations. We serve all of Central Indiana with a wide range of skilled tree removal and tree care services, for both residential and commercial properties. Whether you need a single tree removed, or simply require routine tree service, like trimming or pruning, we can deliver prompt and professional service at a fair price. Request a free estimate, today.

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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How to Hire a Reputable Tree Service Company

As a property owner, there are a few things you need to know before outsourcing professional tree service. Whether you need routine tree care such as trimming or pruning, or major tree work like large tree removal or lot clearing, you need a company that can be trusted to deliver safety, quality, and efficiency on every job. And to find the right tree care company, you need to know what to look for.

Continue reading to learn how to hire a dependable tree service company who can manage the size and scope of your tree service needs.

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Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518

Real Experience

When it comes time to research tree care companies, it is important to look for signs of professionalism and skill. The very first thing you want to look for in a tree service company is experience. In an industry like this, hands-on experience is the key to perfecting the tree care craft. At least ten years of experience is a good start, and any more than that is an added assurance. This is especially important for larger or more complex tree service jobs, like stump removal and storm damage clearance.

Valued Credentials

Aside from experience, there are a few other credentials to look for in a tree service company. Licensing and insurance is key when it comes to any service-oriented company. So be sure your choice of service is licensed and insured. Not only does this protect you, it ensures that your property is in the hands of certified professionals.

Fair Prices

Request estimates from your potential tree service candidates to compare pricing and overall costs. Not only will this help you gain an understanding of the average cost of tree service, it will allow you to compare competitors’ prices and choose which ones seems the most fair and the least suspicious. Keep in mind that if the estimate is drastically lower than the average cost of the other estimates you’ve received, it could be an indication of unethical work. So take oddly-low estimates as a warning rather than a miracle.

Quality Labor and Equipment

Make sure your tree service company retains the proper equipment to provide safe and efficient tree work. But also be sure they are fully-staffed to manage the size and scope of your tree service needs. A fully-equipped and staffed tree service company is a sign that they are a reputable team to hire.

Indianapolis Tree Service at an Affordable Price

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for Indianapolis tree services you can trust. We are highly trained and experienced tree care technicians that offer commercial and residential tree services at affordable prices. As professional tree specialists, we know precisely how to manage each and every tree service job requested of us. We only use quality equipment to carry out our tree care services and never neglect safety. And if you have a tree emergency after regular business hours, we offer two separate after-hours phone lines!

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Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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4 Tree Diseases You Should Watch Out For

Tree diseases are common reasons for tree removal.  There are four particular illnesses that trees fall victim to quite often.  These infections, infestations, ailments, and sicknesses all have a devastating effect on trees, and can quickly lead to their demise.  Continue reading to quickly learn four common tree diseases that can kill trees, and that property owners should be on the look for.

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Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518

❶ Elm Disease

In the early 1900’s, oversea shipments brought in non-native beetles. Today, these beetles like to burrow into a variety of elm trees, and take down the plant fast.  Elms that are already infected with a fungal disease are even easier for these Dutch beetles to invade, making them popular targets.  If the leaves of an Elm tree begin to turn yellow, or die, right before Fall, it could be a sign of elm disease.  In this case, the tree would need to be treated; otherwise tree removal is the only option.

❷ Heart Rot

This disease attacks hardwood trees.  The name basically describes the signs of a tree with this condition.  The disease begins to weaken the tree’s structure and stability from within; all while cause branches to weaken and break as well.  This can be potentially dangerous for any structure or person near this type of infected tree.  Mushroom caps and fungus are common hints of heart rot as well.  Treatment is possible, but very complicated.  Expert pruning and dead wooding could save a rotting hardwood tree.  Basically, it is important to promote as much healthy growth as possible through pruning and dead wooding.

❸ Oak Wilt

Insects or root graphs carry this disease to trees.  It is much deadlier than heart rot, but has the same effect.  One the spores have entered the tree it can take as little as six months to kill the host completely.  Oak Wilt cannot be treated, but it can be detected and prevented.  Any tree near the infected tree runs risk to the disease as well.  Professional tree services can properly prune and seal wounds to rid the tree of Oak Wilt.

❹ Chestnut Blight

When a tree becomes infected with Chestnut Blight, it is similar to when humans become infected with small pox.  American Chestnut Trees were near extinction in the early 1900’s because of this infection.  Signs that include, cankers and orange-brown stains on the bark can indicate Chestnut Blight Disease.  Treatment involves chemical tree injections, so professional assistance is highly advised in this situation.

How to Evaluate Tree Care Needs in Indianapolis

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 to speak with a friendly and knowledgeable tree service professional, and request a free estimate for Indianapolis tree service, today. We have a state-certified arborist available to inspect the health and needs of your landscaping trees. Furthermore, we are a family owned and operated tree care company, which means we understand the value of a dollar, which is why we offer our tree services at fair and reasonable rates. So get started today with a free quote!

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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Do Trees Need Care in the Fall?

Just because the summer has ended does not mean that your tree care responsibilities can be put on hold until the next bloom. Unlike other species of plants and shrubbery, trees require attention year-round. So if you are asking yourself whether or not you need to provide service for your landscaping trees this season, the answer is yes.

Continue reading to learn what you need to know about tree care in autumn.

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Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518

Fall Tree Care Tips

Giving your trees the care they need this time of year is important for many reasons. Not only will it abate pests and diseases, fall tree care can help ensure soil and root health, proper growth, visual appeal, and longevity. It can also improve energy efficiency, cost savings, safety, and more.

The degree of tree maintenance and care will vary among species, as well as, the time of year. In the fall, the important tree services to outsource include pruning, mulching, fertilizing, cable and bracing, staking, removal, planting, insulation, and possibly pesticide applications.

Pruning – Tree pruning is important because it stimulates new growth, which in turn, enhances the strength, appeal, and performance of trees. In the winter, trees need to be pruned for optimal spring growth, as well as, pest and disease protection through the colder months.

Mulching – Mulching is also a year-round necessity for trees. Not only does it provide aesthetic appeal, it actually protects tree roots and retains soil moisture via insulation. All of this helps improve soil nutrient levels and conditions, thus promoting healthy tree growth all year.

Fertilizing – Fertilizing your trees in the fall can help enhance or improve growth.

Cable and Bracing – Winter can pose a long list of inclement weather conditions, including strong winds and heavy snow and ice. Cabling and bracing young or weak trees is a recommended task for fall. Also consider tree staking for shorter trees you wish to protect.

Tree Removal – If you have any dead or dying trees on your property that could pose a serious hazard if they were to topple over, it is imperative that you remove them before the inclement winter conditions arrive.

Planting – The fall is the perfect time to plant or transplant a tree. It gives the roots time to acclimate and expand, thus producing better results once the spring growth season is here.

Pesticide – Although pesticide application is not recommended for all trees and properties, some have good results with fall treatments. Rather than using a pesticide, have your trees inspected for pests and diseases this time of year to learn alternative treatment options.

Indianapolis Fall Tree Care

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for Indianapolis tree service you can trust. We are licensed and insured tree care contractors who serve both residential and commercial properties with a wide range of professional tree care services, including stump removal, lot clearing, storm damage clearance, and more. Request an estimate, today.

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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Common Glossary Terms for Tree Leaves

Trees are among the most important natural organisms on the planet. In order for trees to thrive, they rely on their leaves for many matters, from wind resistance and driplines, to photosynthesis. Continue below to learn more about tree leaves by reviewing a glossary list of common tree leave terms.

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Indianapolis Tree Care Service 317-783-2518

Tree Leave Terms and Definitions

🍃 ALTERNATE – Alternate tree leaves are staggered along a twig rather than directly across from one another.

🍃 BLADE – Blades refer to the flat surface areas of broad tree leaf trees.

🍃 BRACT – Bracts are modified leaves that grows a flower.

🍃 BROADLEAF – Broadleaf trees are trees that have flat, thin, thins that typically shed once a year.

🍃 COMPOUND LEAF – Compound leaves are those that have more than one blade (see definition above).

🍃 CHLOROPHYLL – A green pigment in tree leaves (and cyanobacteria) that is in control of absorbing UV light in order to provide energy for photosynthesis (see definition below).

🍃 DECIDUOUS – Deciduous trees lose their tree leaves in the fall, enter dormancy in the winter, and blooms again in spring.

🍃 DRIPLINE – The perimeter around the canopy of a tree where the rains drips off of the leaves. See our blog, “How to Measure a Tree’s Critical Root Zone”, for help locating a tree’s drip line.

🍃 EVERGREEN – Evergreen trees do not lose their foliage, and remain “green” all year long.

🍃 LEAF SCAR – When a leaf detaches from a twig, a mark is left behind called a leaf scar.

🍃 LOBE – Tree leaf lobes are the protrusions that give a leaf its shape.

🍃 MARGIN – Leaf margin refers to a leaf’s edge. Accordingly, the term entire margin refers to leaves that have smooth, non-toothed edges (see definition below).

🍃 MIDRIB – The midrib is the primary vein of a leaf, also known as a rib.

🍃 OPPOSITE – Two or three tree leaves that grow along the same twig, but directly across from one another.

🍃 PALMATE – Tree leaves that have blades, lobes, or veins that are arranged in a way that is similar to fingers and hands.

🍃 PINNATE – Tree leaves that have blades, lobes, or veins that are arranged in a way that is similar to feathers.

🍃 PERSISTENT Deciduous (see definitions above) tree leaves that fail to drop, and remain all year long.

🍃 PETIOLE – Petioles are essential the stem, or leafstalk, of a leaf that connects it to a twig.

🍃 SIMPLE LEAF – A leaf that has just one leaf blade with a bud at the base of the leafstalk.

🍃 SINUS – Tree leaves that have indentations between the lobes and blades (see definitions above).

🍃 TEETH – Leaf teeth are the notches on the outside edge of a leaf.

Where to Get Trusted Tree Care Advice

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for experienced tree service in Indianapolis and throughout Central Indiana. We offer a wide range of residential and commercial tree services, including tree removal, tree trimming, stump grinding, stump removal, lot clearing, and more. If you want professional and efficient service you can trust, Complete Tree Care is the right call!

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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What are Monocots and Dicots?

Have you somehow stumbled across the terms, monocots and dicots, and wonder how they pertain to the tree care industry? Well if so, you have come to the right place. Continue reading to learn the difference between these two important biological organisms, as well as, how they apply to your particular landscaping goals.

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Indianapolis Tree Service 317-783-2518

Angiosperms

In our last blog, you learned the difference between angiosperms and gymnosperms. When it comes to monocots and dicots, angiosperms are the focus. Angiosperms are often considered the dominant plant-life on the planet because there are an estimated 250,000 to 400,000 species known to man. They are any type of flowering plant whose seeds (ovules) are enclosed in an ovary (usually a fruit). Angiosperms are conventional garden plants that bloom flowers from a hidden seed usually enclosed inside a fruit, which develops from carpels.

As mentioned, angiosperms are the emphasis when discussing monocots and dicots, as all flowering plants are one or the other. These two categories of angiosperms primarily represent the differences in the morphology of plant stems, leaves, flowers, and fruits. At a closer look, the basic chief difference between the two comes down to cotyledons. Cotyledons are embryo seed leaves that store and distribute nutrition to the embryo until it can use photosynthesis make its own food.

Monocots, or monocotyledons, have only one cotyledon. Examples include:

❦ Lilies
❦ Daffodils
❦ Grains
❦ Fruit Trees
❦ Corn
❦ Onions

Dicots, or dicotyledons, have two cotyledons. Examples common include:

❦ Daisies
❦ Peas
❦ Mangoes
❦ Apple Trees
❦ Mint

Two Ways to Tell the Difference:

☑ Dicot leaves have branched veins. Monocot leaves are parallel.

☑ Dicot flowers have petals in multiples of 4’s or 5’s. Monocots bloom petals in 3’s or 4’s.

Indianapolis Tree Service

Call Complete Tree Care at 317-783-2518 for prompt and professional Indianapolis tree service you can afford. We are experienced tree care technicians that can resolve your tree problems, regardless of your projects size or scope. We offer a wide range of tree removal and tree services, for both residential and commercial properties. We even offer free estimates and free tree care advice!

Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
Indianapolis Tree Care 317-783-2518
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