How to Wrap Trees for Winter: Three Tips

When winter arrives, can your trees thrive or only survive the dry, cold temperatures? If you aren’t sure, it could be helpful to start protecting your trees this winter by wrapping the trunks.

Here’s how to wrap trees for winter, as advised by Arborist Aboard, a top-rated tree service company in Land O’ Lakes.

Which Types of Trees to Wrap for the Winter

Most trees don’t need a wrap during winter. However, trees that could benefit from wrapping in the winter include young trees with thin bark and those in areas at risk of sunscald or salt spray.

During the cold season, it also helps to stay alert for weather updates. You may want to cover your trees when forecasts predict winter frost or temperatures close to freezing. In particular, tree species likely to succumb to harsh winter conditions include the following:

  • Soft maple
  • Willow
  • Crabapple
  • Ash
  • Honey locust

It’s best to wrap young trees for at least their first two winters until their bark develops a slightly rougher texture. Sensitive tree species will benefit from tree wrapping for their first five winters.  

Three Tips for How to Wrap Trees For Winter The Right Way

How should you wrap your trees? Here are three tips from the tree professionals:

#1 Use a Tree Wrap To Keep The Bark Intact

Did you know that tree wraps keep the tree trunk cooler rather than warmer during the winter months? Wrapping protects the trunk from sunscald and from the sun’s rays, activating the tree’s dormant cells too early. If the cells awaken on a sunny afternoon and then the tree experiences rapid cooling as the winter sun sets, the cells will freeze and burst, causing the bark to crack.  

#2 Use a Tree Wrap at Just The Right Time

When it comes to tree wrapping, timing matters. Generally, you want to wrap the tree in the fall as the tree slows its growth. As a bonus, these tree wraps also help to protect the tree against wildlife damage.

Unwrap the tree in early spring after the last frost to let the trunk expand and prevent pests and diseases from getting a foothold. Unwrapping as it begins to warm will also prevent problems like abrasions and girdling.

#3 Use the Wrap That Doesn’t Choke the Tree

The most common tree wrapping materials include polypropylene fabric, burlap, corrugated cardboard, and paper products. 

Steer clear of anything that wraps around the entire trunk, as it may potentially girdle the tree and compromise the tree’s overall health. 

Learn How To Wrap a Tree Like a Professional Arborist

Have you identified some trees you want to wrap this winter? There’s a right way and a wrong way to wrap them. 

Here’s how to wrap trees for winter for the best results:  

  • Start wrapping from the bottom.
  • Wind the wrap around the base on a slight upward angle.  
  • Keep the wrap snug around the trunk but not too tight.
  • Don’t leave any gaps on the way up.
  • Wrap the trunk to the bottommost branches.
  • Secure the wrap at the top with a small tack or staple.

Tree guards also protect against winter damage as effective alternatives to tree wraps. 

Trust Your Local Tree Experts  

The ISA-certified arborists can help you wrap your trees and take care of the following:

  • Tree removal  
  • Tree trimming and pruning  
  • Arborist consulting  
  • Disaster relief services  

Why not call Arborist Aboard at (813) 920-4410 to request a free estimate for tree services in Odessa, Florida, or nearby? Reach out to learn the best time to hire a tree service or request more information on how to wrap trees for winter!  


Arborist Aboard is owned and operated by an ISA Certified Arborist and a second-generation tree care professional. We take great pride in our work and the customers we serve, commercial and residential.

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8611 Vivian Bass Way
Odessa, FL. 33556
(813) 920-4410

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