THE DRIP ZONE
Properly watering your trees is all about getting the water to the area known as the "Drip Zone."
As trees grow, so do their root systems!
Which means, the "drip zone," or watering location grows and changes along with the tree.
The Drip Zone is where trees absorb water from their root system underground. When it rains, most of the rainwater drips off the ends of the branches, soaking into the soil around the edge of the canopy. Because of this, the tips of the root system naturally stretch to reach the outside of the canopy to take up water. We can't see it, but tree roots can actually extend way past the radius of the canopy to search for water, and even farther in our desert soils!
While trees use their root systems to absorb water and nutrients essential for growth, they also rely on them for anchoring and support. When drip emitters are placed right next to the tree trunk, roots will coil tightly, directly under the trunk, resulting in girdling roots. The root system never extends to the canopy, and cannot support the crown of the tree. Without strong, wide-reaching roots, trees will begin to lean, and even the largest trees can easily be knocked over by wind.
Periodically relocating drip emitters to the proper "Drip Zone" will guide thirsty roots to naturally reach past the expanding canopy and establish healthy anchors for your trees.