Mature trees add value to the home as well as provide pleasant places for the family to relax outdoors. However, large trees can do significant damage when they topple over. Fortunately, most trees don't simply fall down out of the blue, and knowing what to look for can circumvent the potential for property damage and personal injury as a result of falling trees. Following are three indications that it's time to call a professional tree service to investigate whether a tree can be saved or if it has to be removed for safety's sake.
Crown dieback frequently goes unnoticed among homeowners, particularly in tall trees where the top is out of the line of vision . However, this is often the first indication that a tree is entering a weakened state. This is more likely to occur in deciduous trees than in evergreens. Using a pair of binoculars, periodically inspect the crown for signs of dead or dying leaves and branches.
Just because a tree is leaning doesn't mean it's about to topple over. Some trees that grow this way are actually quite well-balanced. However, if a tree develops a sudden lean, you need to contact a tree service as soon as possible. Look for signs of cracked soil on the opposite side of the lean and exposed roots around the base of the tree. In some cases, arborists such as General Tree Service can save these trees by installing supports. In areas with high wind activity, however, the most popular option is to err on the side of caution and have the leaning tree removed, especially if it has the potential to fall on people, homes or other structures and vehicles.
Fungal decay is a common problem in all trees and can weaken them to the extent that they pose significant dangers in the average home landscape. Mushrooms growing on the sides of trees means that the tree has been used as a host by fungal pathogens for a number of years. Unfortunately, by the time the mushrooms appear on the bark, the interior of the tree may have already experienced substantial damage. Affected trees are more likely to topple over when it's windy because of structural weakness caused by interior populations of fungal pathogens.
Inspecting your trees for these signs on a regular basis can help keep you, your family, and your property safe from toppling trees.