Tree Flaws that are Warning Signs

Today, ‘we’re going to talk about some signs a property owner can use to determine if a tree might be in imminent danger. A tree could be ready to fall and cause a lot of damage.

It’s leaning

Trees which are leaning are fine–sometimes. It depends on why they lean and if ‘it’s new or not. If a tree leans because it has an uneven canopy, it is possible that judicious pruning by an excellent tree service can restore it to safety. But, if the trunk is leaning at the base and has a lifted root plate or a root plate failure, the roots are damaged, and the tree ‘can’t be ”replanted” or righted with much success.

Small (<4″) diameter trees can be stake if they are leaning. Smaller trees in soft soil which can be compacted before a lifted root plate might be saved.  

Dead or dropping branches

A tree which drops branches or which has dead branches 

A tree that is shedding branches is the arboreal equivalent of a person who is losing weight. It ‘doesn’t happen without reason. ‘It’s quite worrisome because the branches can drop randomly. 

Damaged bark

Damaged bark includes cracks, fissures, cankers (missing bark), or inclusions. A branch which has broken off can create a wound which can rot from the inside of the trunk like a bad tooth. While this ‘doesn’t always happen, for example, if the tree is very healthy, it’s a worthy concern. 

Poor branch growth

Branches which grow in a V-shape, cluster or crowd each other are weak branches. They have a propensity for breaking off during windy days. Large branches which grow directly over a structure such as a house, or too close to the roof bear close watching for signs of trouble.

Root damage

Without digging up the tree and examining the roots, there are a few ways to tell if tree roots have failed the tree. The first is a tree which refuses to grow normally regardless of how well the rest of the plant material thrives in the area. The tree was likely as not root bound, and a stiff wind will eventually blow it over.

The second is root rot, which may be indicated by fungal growth on the trunk, mushrooms around the base of the tree. Of course, digging it up will also show the rot.

If a homeowner thinks a tree has one or more warning signs, it’s best to call an expert tree company to manage it before it becomes a fiasco.

When to Call a Professional Tree Service

Today we’re going to talk about when it’s time to call a professional tree service to prune or remove a damaged tree. Knowing when to call a tree service will save a property owner money, yet protect him and his interests in a potentially hazardous situation.

Here are the times when it’s wise to call a pro:

When the break is high

Cracked or broken branches high in the limbs of a tree can pose a danger to people and property below.  But, more than that, it’s hazardous to climb a tree and wield the tools necessary to cut the offending limb. In the process of pruning, the branch or even the property owner could fall from the tree.  

When the branch is heavy

A large or heavy branch is another danger due to the potential for property damage caused by the limb falling. There is also the potential for injury to the person pruning, either by the limb or the tools required to prune a big branch.  For this reason, tree trimmers require extensive training and are required to wear safety gear while working. 

This also applies when the tree is close to a structure, power lines, or another risk or obstacle, a tree service can minimize the danger without putting the worker at risk. 

When the property owner lacks expertise

When a property owner lacks the knowledge in proper pruning techniques, even one who has appropriate skills with a chainsaw and owns the protective gear shouldn’t prune a tree. Inexpert tree pruning can also damage a healthy tree and create more problems.  Some of these include allowing entry of insects and pathogens or creating a permanent ugly flaw instead of a cut which will heal nicely.

Light limb removal at the lowest branches of a tree is a skill which can be learned and practiced if the property owner has the right tools and protective gear. But, when branches are bigger, in hazardous locations, or require more skill than the property owner possesses, a good tree trimming company can do the job safely and skillfully, thereby preventing more damage to the tree and maintaining a safe environment for all.

Causes of Damaged Tree Branches

Although one might think that a sudden storm was the cause of a broken branch or fallen tree limb, it may only be the catalyst for damage of a tree which was already compromised by an underlying issue. Today, we’re going to talk about some of the causes of weakened branches that will cause damage or break larger limbs.

Heavy fruit or smaller branches

The weight of too much fruit or many small branches will strain the limbs of an otherwise healthy tree, making the load more than a limb should bear. Judicious thinning of the fruit when it’s small will produce a better quality crop and not create so much stress on the tree.

Insects and diseases

Pests or pathogens can infect a tree and quietly damage and weaken its structure. The property owner may not realize there is a problem until an outside force, perhaps wind which a healthy tree would otherwise weathered, causes a branch or even the entire tree to topple. There are also disinfecting practices for tools which will keep certain diseases from spreading beyond the infected tree during pruning. These should be employed during certain infestations.

Poor care

Inadequate care in the form of poor pruning, watering, or fertilizing can make a tree weak and susceptible to damage. This includes planting root-bound saplings, which are never able to fully root into the soil.  A decent wind will knock the entire tree over, only to reveal a nearly non-existent root ball.

Undesirable location

Planting a tree too close to a roadway can leave a tree vulnerable to passing cars. Some trees are struck again and again, leaving them badly damaged. Open breaks and splits offer the opportunity for pathogens to invade the inner structure of the tree, which can ultimately disfigure or kill a tree.

Trees can also be planted too close to buildings or electrical structures will result in the need to prune them constantly. Not only will the shape of the tree be compromised, but the health of the tree can be weakened, and it will almost certainly shorten its lifespan.Left unpruned, they can become a hazard to power lines.

If a tree becomes damaged as the result of one of these or other factors, a tree service can prune or remove the tree safely, protecting the property and its structures and saving the owner the hassle and danger of doing the job himself.