Dos and Don’ts When Removing Trees
Before you remove a tree from your property, make sure you know what you’re doing. Here are some facts and tips to help you.
For some people, the very idea of removing trees seems so wrong it feels like a crime against nature. Trees, after all, offer a very long list of benefits.
They provide shade, so you can lounge in your yard and enjoy the breeze. They shade your home too, so that in the summer months you won’t have to pay as much on your electricity bills. The US Department of Agriculture estimates that the cooling capacity of a young healthy tree is equivalent to 10 room-sized air conditioners that you keep running for 20 hours a day. Imagine that.
Homeowners looking to sell their properties can also benefit because many people are willing to pay more for a home with trees in the yard. The property value can go up by as much as 10% if you have healthy trees, according to the USDA Forest Service. Aside from the cooling factor, they also look great as they keep your property from turning into a purely concrete slab. Other like the privacy they can offer, since trees can keep people from seeing through the windows of the house.
Tree Removal to Mitigate Hazards and Risks
With all these benefits, why then would some people even think about removing their trees? Well, the reason is that having trees in your property also come with disadvantages. For one, trees can actually be risky for the property owners and the people passing by.
The problems aren’t all that obvious when the tree is still young. But as it grows older and bigger, the risks increase. More mature trees are also more likely to drop sharp and heavy branches on unsuspecting passersby. Their branches can cause problems for electrical wires, and their roots can cause conflict and damage with structures in the property.
How to Recognize and Deal with Tree Hazards and Risks
So how do you know for sure if you have potential or current tree hazards? One of the best ways to find out is to get the help of a professional arborist. They can assist in the management of the trees in your property, and they can also suggest treatments that can minimize the dangers posed by particular trees.
Arborists are experts in recognizing the various signs that can indicate potential hazards from your trees. These signs include dead or detached branches in the trees, cavities or rotten wood along major branches and the trunk, splits or cracks in the trunk, and even the presence of mushrooms at the base of the trees.
When they see these signs, they can then propose a solution and it’s not always tree removal right away. If falling branches is a danger then they can ask you to remove your cars and picnic tables from under the tree. They can also prune the tree or put in a cable and brace to support the tree branches. The mature trees can receive the appropriate routine care they need as well when you have an arborist helping you out.
However, in some cases all these possible solutions may not be enough to mitigate the potential risk. The tree may have to be removed, though you can always plant a new tree. Hopefully, you can find a more suitable location for that new tree.
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What to Do in Case of Storm Damage to Your Tree
Trees grow outdoors and they’re always at the mercy of the weather conditions. When your area is constantly hit by severe weather, it can be rather difficult for your trees. The rains can penetrate and soften the soil, so that the roots aren’t as firmly attached to the ground. These rains are often accompanied by strong winds, so these winds can then overturn the trees when the soil is loose enough.
Then there’s the lightning that can come along with these storms. The lightning can hit your tree which instantly vaporizes the water inside the tree. As a result, the lightning strike will split the wood and explode the bark.
A storm can be so disruptive that it doesn’t even have to overturn a tree to do damage. It can cause the branches to sway so that it can interfere with utility lines, and the branches may also be blown away and hit homes, cars, and people.
If your tree does get damaged due to storms and severe weather, your very best option is to contact a professional arborist. This expert can help with proper damage assessment and determine if your damaged tree can still recover.
You really don’t want to work on a damage tree by yourself, because it’s just too dangerous for anyone without the proper training and experience. Since these trees can still be in contact with electrical wires, there’s a chance that you can get electrocuted. You really can’t risk making a mistake when you try to remove branches while the tree is near electrical lines.
Some broken limbs may be hanging high up the tree, and they can fall on you at any time. The limbs may also spring unexpectedly when you move and cut them, and that can lead to injury as well. The tree may even just overturn as you work on it, and it can fall on you or on your property.
All these risks are best dealt with by a professional arborist. This expert has the proper knowledge and tools to deal not just with your tree, but with the associated risks as well. When it comes to dealing with tree storm damage, better them than you! The risks are just too great.
How to Avoid Damaging Trees during Construction
One of the problems that can result in trees posing unacceptable risks is that you didn’t take care of them properly to begin with. You can damage trees inadvertently when you build a home near trees, and this damage can weaken a tree so that the tree in turn can damage the house. It’s a vicious circle.
While it is sometimes necessary to remove trees from the property so you can build your home in the location you want, an arborist can be consulted so that you don’t have to remove trees arbitrarily. The arborist can determine if the tree can stay, provided that you don’t damage the tree during construction.
There are several ways you can cause damage to your tree. Your construction equipment can tear the bark, break branches, and wound the trunk. These damages are usually permanent, and if they’re extensive enough the tree can just die of the wounds. The root of the tree can be cut, which can severely affect its stability as well as its health. The soil around the roots can be overly compacted so the roots can’t grow, the water can’t penetrate, and the tree can’t get enough oxygen for the root.
These types of damages can be avoided with proper planning in consultation with an arborist. Barriers can be erected around the tree at the right distance, with no soil disturbance and equipment allowed within the fenced area. You can limit access to just one route through your property, with specified storage areas for equipment and materials. Work zones should be kept as far away as possible from the trees you intend to protect.
All the measures you want to enact to protect the trees should be made known to your builders and contractors. Try to visit the site every day to keep an eye on things, and if possible put in penalties and fines if workers violate the rules. These workers must realize you’re serious so that they will take heed and comply with your measures.
How to Treat Trees Damaged by Construction
Again, a professional arborist will be invaluable when it comes to treating damaged trees during construction. Several possible treatments can be implemented, depending on the type and severity of the damage.
- Dead and diseased limbs, as well as broken branches can be pruned off from the crown of the tree. However, other types of routine maintenance pruning may have to be delayed by a few years.
- Bracing rods and cables may also be put in, though the arborist can determine if these measures can actually work for your particular problems.
- Wounds in the bark and trunk can be treated. Any loose bark can be removed, and jagged edges can be cut off with a very sharp knife. This has to be done carefully, so that the cutting doesn’t affect the living tissues.
- After construction damage to the tree, one of the most crucial measures you need to set up involves making sure that the root zone has enough (but not too much) water supply. You have to water the trees with a long slow soak over the whole root zone, and you need to do this as needed especially during the summer. Overwatering isn’t good, nor is shallow watering too frequently a good idea. It you have poor drainage, then this must be improved or else the tree will quickly get worse. Mulching may also be another option.
It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of info you need to have so that you can remove trees properly from your property. That’s why it’s imperative that you should consult with us, a professional arborist. We have the necessary knowledge and skill to do the job. We’ll make sure that trees that can be preserved will be preserved. We can also determine if tree removal is necessary, and if so, we’ll will get the job done correctly the first time!