In this TBR article, Nick Bates from Davey's Long Island offices talks about the unintended consequences of using rock salt.

Posted: January 23, 2024

Rock salt has long been one of the primary methods used for combating the onslaught of snow and ice during the winter season. Known for its accessibility and cost effectiveness, rock salt impedes ice formation by lowering the freezing temperature of water and is a common deicing agent used both residentially and by transit authorities.Snowy neighborhood street

The Town of Brookhaven Highway Department maintains numerous salt storage facilities with a combined rock salt capacity of nearly 25,000 tons. During any given snowstorm, the department sets out to treat its 3,700 lane miles of road with rock salt as a preventive measure against treacherous driving conditions. But the widespread dispersal of the sodium chloride chemical compound can lead to unintended consequences that have a negative effect on our trees and other landscape plants.

“Rock salt dries out and changes the pH of soil, and sometimes it even changes the form of fertilizer, so the plants can’t uptake the right amount of nitrogen and other available micronutrients,” said Nick Bates, Long Island district manager of The Davey Tree Expert Company.

Davey Tree is one of the oldest and largest tree care companies in North America, providing research driven environmental consulting, arboriculture and horticulture services.

To read more about the consequences of rock salt, click here.

For more information, contact the Long Island Davey office.

The Davey Tree Expert Company provides research-driven tree services, grounds maintenance and environmental consulting for residential, utility, commercial and environmental partners in the U.S. and Canada. Established in 1880 and headquartered in Kent, Ohio, Davey has over 12,000 employees and is the ninth largest employee-owned company in the U.S. This year, Davey celebrates 45 years of employee ownership – Join us and apply today! 

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