This month's success story comes from Nick Mook, owner of Mook's Arbor Systems, Inc., in Los Angeles, California. Mook, an ISA certified arborist, has taken care of trees and shrubs on some of the most glamorous, star-studded estates in Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Malibu and Bel Air for the last 17 years.
We recently caught up with Mook, a down-to-earth business owner with a passion for environmentally-friendly plant care.
One of the famous estates we work on has magnificent California redwoods that are nearly 100 years old. That's amazing in an urban environment. We've been able to keep the redwoods trees healthy by implementing a soil salt reduction program based on Growth Products' liquid solutions.
Even more dramatically, we've used the same salt reduction program to protect transplanted boxed redwoods. Redwoods are very sensitive to chloride and sodium levels in the soil, and often quickly show burned branch tips after being transplanted into our increasingly saline soils. We started drenching transplanted redwoods with a mix of Growth Products' Essential Plus, Companion Biological Fungicide, HydroMax and low-salt Nitro+K 22-0-16 fertilizer, and the results have been amazing. Our clients are thrilled with the improved color, the plant growth, and the lack of necrosis on the tips of the branches. And these are expensive, large redwoods that have been transplanted - the boxes range up to 92" in diameter.
Yes, they certainly are. Here in the Los Angeles Basin, soils are getting higher chloride levels and becoming more sodic all the time. South California is experiencing a historic drought... we've had only 6 inches of rain so far this year. Consequently salt is not being leached out of the soil as it normally is. On top of that, our municipal water systems are adding more chlorides and salt, so the irrigation water only makes the soil problems worse.
Two things really stand out in my mind. One is the humic acid in Essential Plus. Essential Plus adds beneficial bacteria (such as Bacillus subtilis) to soil, and its humic acids stimulate vital soil microbial activity. Essential also adds necessary carbons to soil and improves the leaching of salts.
The other thing that jumps out is the low salt index of all of Growth Products' solutions, including its fertilizers. The last thing I want to do to a stressed plant is to fertilize it with a high-salt fertilizer, which is what you often find in the trade. The extra salts in traditional fertilizers stress plants even more, as the salt draws the water out the roots.
I realize that every property is different and every situation is different, and that a cookie-cutter approach won't work. I love working with plants and helping clients address their plants' needs. And I believe that by taking care of the soil and using sound cultural practices, it is possible to minimize the use of harmful chemicals and achieve superior results.
"Success starts with healthy soil..."
Many thanks to Nick Mook for his help with this article, and congratulations for providing our Best Success Story of the month.
Growth Products has been amazed and impressed with the knowledge and skills of its professional customers. Now is your opportunity to let your Success Story be heard! Visit www.growthproducts.com to enter to win $500 in free Growth Products’ merchandise and to have your story featured in our monthly newsletter. In addition, one Grand Prize winner will receive $2,500 in cash!