<< Previous    [1]  2    Next >>

Tree Damage Can Be Prevented!

By: Larry Bartlett, Certified Arborist

Many New Hampshire residents witness the destruction of "Ice Storm 2008". Ice damage in trees is predictable and preventable. Here are some clues to help you determine if the trees on your property pose a safety hazard and what to do about it.

How do tree failures happen?

Under ice and snow, the most common structural failure to occur in trees are weak forks. You can identify a weak fork by observing the angle of the bark ridge. The bark ridge is a narrow strip of compressed bark where a branch emerges from the tree. The more vertical the bark ridge is, the less holding wood the branch will have. Also, fast growing trees like Pines or Willows tend to be brittle and snap off branches or crown sections.

Cabled Tree Windham, NH

How can breakage be prevented?

For weak forks and multi-stemmed trees, a properly installed cable support system can be installed in the crown of the tree. For fast growing trees, regular pruning from early in the tree's life can keep the branches strong and short. It's important to consider the location and ultimate size of fast growing trees before you plant one.

Should the cut be painted after pruning off a branch?

No. Decay-causing bacteria is naturally present in the air. Painting the wound only seals in the infection. The best way to protect a tree is to make a "collar cut" by cutting along the bump at the branch base. The tree will set up a chemical barrier that seals off the infection, much the same way a battleship closes down compartments after a hull breech to prevent the ship from filling up with water and sinking.

<< Previous    [1]  2    Next >>