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How to Tell if Your Tree is Diseased or Dead
Trees can get sick. In fact, it happens often. Many times, trees are able to fight a sickness by themselves. Occasionally though, a tree’s sickness is a potentially-fatal disease that, without human intervention, deteriorates gradually until the tree is dead. For tree owners, it can be difficult to tell the difference between a diseased tree that still has a chance to survive with the proper treatment and a dead tree.
How to Check for a Diseased Tree
A habit of routine assessment of a tree’s parts will help the observer to catch disease before it spreads and kills the tree. It’s especially important that trees receive extra attention following series of storms, as disease often sets in due to heavy rain or wind.
Among the conditions that should cause concern are:
- brittle bark
- cracks or cankers
- weak branch unions
- the presence of fungi.
These conditions are often outward signs of serious problems inside the tree. Many tree diseases are specific to a certain type of tree, so observation of disease depends on the observer becoming familiar with the diseases that threaten the type of tree being observed. An arborist should be consulted as soon as any possible sign of disease is observed, so that the disease can be diagnosed, and treatment can be prescribed.
How to Tell if a Tree is Dead
In order to tell whether the tree is dead, a couple of tests can be done. If you have a dead tree, it’s important to get it removed from your property quickly before it can fall and cause any damage.
The first test involves snapping off a twig from various areas of the tree. If green underskin is visible on the inside of the snapped twigs, it’s an indication that the tree is alive in those areas. If the twig snaps off easily, and is brown and dry inside, the area it came from is dying or dead. If twigs from every part of the tree are snapped off easily to reveal brittle and dry wood, it’s likely the whole tree is dead, and should be removed. A similar test can be done by scratching off bark from the trunk of the tree to see if what lies beneath is green and vibrant, or brown and brittle.
If you’ve got a dead or dying tree, contact us at Yellow Ribbon Tree Specialists and we’ll take care of it for you. Dead trees can be dangerous as there’s no telling if or when they’ll fall and cause damage to your property.