Trees can cause damage to both people and property. When a storm blows through, high winds and heavy rains that saturate the soil may increase the likelihood of a tree falling either during the storm or after. Likewise, in the winter months, heavy snow and ice can have a similar effect. As a homeowner, you need to be vigilant about assessing the strength of the trees in your yard.
Here are some simple steps that you can take to stop a falling tree before it happens.
- Inspect your trees regularly. Frequent falling branches from a particular tree may indicate a problem. Mushrooms, cracks, splits, or rot at the base of a tree might indicate that it needs to be removed. Wood shavings and small holes around the base of the tree are warning signs of termite infestation. Termites live just under the soil, so dig around the tree roots and look for large winged ants.
- Inspect your trees after a storm. Are there any noticeable changes such as wear, cuts, or peeling to the branches, bark, or roots? Are parts of the root system newly exposed? Dead foliage may indicate damage to a particular branch. Does the tree lean more than it did prior to the storm? If you have concerns, consult with an arborist to help determine which trees, if any, have the potential to fall.
- Complete recommended tree maintenance. Pruning dead branches will contribute to the overall health of trees. The arborist may recommend removing limbs on a tree that is leaning to distribute the weight more evenly or stabilizing the tree by bracing it. Sometimes a cable is used to support weak branches.
Spend a little time assessing the health of the trees in your yard to identify potential threats. You might just prevent a disaster before it occurs.