We all know that leaf raking is an annual fall ritual. Some might consider leaf raking all that’s necessary to prepare trees for winter. That’s probably not the case, however.
When was the last time your trees had a hazard inspection? If it’s been a few years, this might be the year to have it done. Call to schedule an inspection before winter snow flies, ice forms and heavy rains pelt your trees.
Autumn is the best time to have this service done. Trees bare their bones, so our arborists can see their skeletal structure. This helps them identify weak, dead, dying, touching or scraping limbs, and remove them before a storm breaks them and causes additional damage. Branches hanging over roofs or power lines should also be removed.
During an inspection, our Certified Arborist will check the forks, or crotches, between limbs and branches. If they are “U” shaped, they should be strong enough to withstand anything Mother Nature can throw at them. If they are “V” shaped, they may be weak because the two branches are vying for the same space. As they grow, this space race gets more intense. The stronger limb is going to win and the weaker will break sooner or later, unless cables and braces are installed to take some of the weight off the weaker of these “co-dominant stems.”
We will check the trunk for cracks and rot, with special emphasis on the base and root area. We’ll also check for girdling root and other root problems. A girdling root, also called crossing or choking root by some arborists, occurs when a root grows side ways rather than downward. As it grows, it crosses other roots and, as they try to occupy the same space, the girdling root chokes off the absorption and transportation functions of the roots it crosses. If left unchecked, the tree will decline and, eventually, die. Removal of a girdling root is a simple surgical procedure. A leaning tree can also be a symptom of root problems.
A complete tree inspection before winter will give you the peace of mind that you have done everything possible to prevent personal injury or property damage during any wind or ice storm this winter.
While most of this blog describes what a Certified Arborist will do when conducting a hazard tree inspection, there’s one thing you can do. Take photos of all your trees and other landscape plants. A nice landscape can add up to 20 percent to the value of your home. If you suffer the loss of one or more trees, you may be able to claim a casualty loss on your income taxes.