Spooky Season is here! One of the creepiest things that you can deal with as a homeowner is a dead or dying tree on your property. So how do we identify whether our trees are unhealthy? And can we save them once we realize they show signs of dying?
There are several scary tell-tale signs that your tree is dying and recognizing these signs early can possibly help you save your tree before it’s too late! Here are just a few:
- It shows signs of being rotten to the core – as a tree is dying, bark brittle and cracked, and loose bark starts to fall off. Deep cracks or splits can also extend into the wood of the tree and create cavities, creating weakness.
- It adopts a spooky wardrobe – deciduous trees will show a lack of green leaves and show brown and brittle leaves during the growing season, while evergreens will start to show red, brown, or yellow needles when it’s stressed.
- It becomes a haunted house – pests such as bark beetles and carpenter ants feed off trees that are stressed or dying. It can also become a host to fungal or bacterial infections.
- It develops an eerie tilt – odd growth patterns can indicate weakness or structural issues, while trees that lean more than 15 degrees are an indication they have been compromised by wind or root damage.
- It has open wounds – torn branches, large cuts or splits in a tree are difficult to recover from. Lightning strikes and wind can split trees and cause damage that may lead the tree dying.
- It starts throwing things at you – tree branches and twigs should be flexible when healthy, but trees that constantly shed twigs all over your yard could be unhealthy, and a professional should do an inspection to make sure there is not a larger issue. Note that these falling branches can also be a hazard to your home.
- It gets creepy underground – root trauma can cause tree death, but because they run deep underground, determining damage isn’t always possible. If your tree has a shallow or partially exposed root system, pay attention to signs of damage like poor growth, thinning or yellowing foliage, and dead branches.
- It looks dead inside – right beneath the layer of bark is a layer called the cambium layer. If the tree still has life, the layer will be green. If the tree is dead or dying, the layer will be brown.
Can a dying tree be saved?
If your tree is sick or only part of it appears to be dead or dying, you still may be able to save it with the help of a professional arborist. The sooner the better – the earlier you can detect an issue, the better chance the arborist will have of saving it. Arborists have the training and knowledge required to diagnose and successfully treat tree issues.
Recognizing these signs early may help save your tree from the issues that are haunting it. If you have any questions about the health of your trees, give us a call so that a professional arborist can advise you on the next steps to take.
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