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14 Oct 2017
tree maintenance

Tree Maintenance – Why Should Anyone Worry About It?

Discovering the Benefits of Proper Tree Care and Maintenance

Want to know a secret? Trees develop well and will look better with proper care and maintenance. Compared to trees that you find in the wild, trees that are well-maintained and properly cared for appear fuller and more vibrant. That alone should be reason enough for property owners to start caring about tree maintenance and seasonal tree care.

What is it about tree care and maintenance that’s so important?

Any property owner knows that landscaping is a crucial factor when it comes to maximizing property value. And nothing makes any landscape more beautiful and elegant than the presence of trees.

Trees are no doubt majestic objects of nature that clean the air we breathe and provide an ecosystem for small animals and birds. But they are also living ornaments that can make any place look more pristine and phenomenal. Maintaining and caring for them will help keep them stronger, more fruitful, and vibrant.

The Benefits of Proper Tree Maintenance and Care

The benefits that can be had from proper preventive care and maintenance for trees play a huge role in its importance and why property owners should never overlook the process when it comes to the trees in their properties.

Pruning, trimming, cutting dead branches—all of these are part of a maintenance process that is vital to the health and well-being of trees. The following are some of the basic benefits of proper tree care and maintenance:

1. It helps keep the trees in your property healthy and vibrant.

Removing dead branches, pruning, and trimming are all crucial to maintaining the overall health of a tree. The process also helps ensure a dynamic and cohesive landscape. A full and vibrant tree is always a welcome sight in any property, be it commercial or residential.

Pruning, in particular, helps remove branches that are either dying or are already dead, and helps stimulate new growth. The most crucial aspect to this process, however, is implementing proper pruning techniques in order to get the best possible results.

2. It helps eliminate or minimize potential safety hazards.

Trees that aren’t regularly maintained can quickly turn into safety hazards, especially when they are located in an area near structures or pedestrians. For instance, a tree that is situated near a footpath where a lot of pedestrians pass by has to be regularly pruned to keep dead branches from falling on passersby.

Trees that are near power lines, have branches that cover street signs, or are near any structures should be looked after carefully. If removing the tree is not possible, then having it regularly trimmed or pruned is the most logical solution.

3. It helps improve property value.

Everyone in the real estate business knows that an aesthetically pleasing property landscape, with lots of beautifully maintained trees, can add to the value of the property quite substantially. Adding value to your home doesn’t just involve renovating or redecorating the interior. You also have to mind the overall condition of your landscaping, which will dramatically improve once you have your trees regularly maintained.

4. It helps fruit-bearing trees produce top quality crop.

If you so happen to have a fruit-bearing tree in your property, with proper and regular maintenance, you can actually improve the quality and quantity of the fruits that the tree will produce. There are proper techniques and methods that should be practiced when maintaining fruit-bearing trees. You should consult a certified arborist to figure out the best way to maintain and care for your fruit-bearing plants.

5. It helps newly planted trees to become healthier and more robust as they grow.

Newly planted trees need a lot of care as they develop. Through proper tree care and maintenance techniques, a newly planted tree will be easier to train as far as shape is concerned, and will grow to be stronger and more vibrant. Keeping a tree strong and healthy is very important, especially in places where temperature extremes are often experienced.

6. It helps rehabilitate damaged trees.

Trees can get damaged in extremely hot summers, as well as during extra cold winters. This is where seasonal tree care and maintenance proves its importance. The process can help rehabilitate and repair damaged trees due to extreme weather temperatures. Storm-damaged trees can also benefit from proper maintenance practices and techniques.

More info:

Tree Health Care

Seasonal Tree Care

Pixabay.com photo by Skitterphoto

 

27 Sep 2017
Fall Tree Care

Best Ways to Care for Your Trees During the Fall

Who says the gardening season is over once fall arrives?

Autumn is still actually a good time for planting trees. It’s also the season wherein plenty of nuts and fruits ripen. But if there’s one important thing that every tree owner should do when autumn arrives, that would be preparing their trees for the upcoming winter.

To ensure that your trees will survive the winter, it’s crucial that you prepare them ahead for what’s coming.

Are you all set? Here are the steps:

  1. Inspect Your Trees’ Leaves

Once you have noticed that the leaves of your trees are turning slowly to the color of the season, then that’s the perfect time to inspect them for uneven hues and defoliation. Both of them are actually signs of tree problems like nutrient deficiency, pests, and diseases.

The appearance of mushrooms during fall is not really a problem unless there are a lot of them appearing near the trunks. This could be a sign that the roots are decaying.

  1. Evaluate the Soil

Have you had the soil in the vicinity analyzed? If not yet, then consider doing it this season. Have your soil analyzed. That way, if there is a nutrient imbalance in your backyard, you can instantly apply the needed fertilizer before winter comes rolling in.

  1. Spray Anti-Desiccant on Leaves

Water loss is one of the major reasons why trees suffer during winter. With limited water to absorb, trees are left without resort but to use the water they’ve stored in their stems and leave.

One way of avoiding water loss is through spraying anti-desiccant on the leaves. This will provide leaves with a waxy layer that will keep in moisture.

  1. Mulch

Don’t wait for winter to come before you start mulching your trees. As early as today, mulch the surrounding of your trees to trap warmth and provide trees ample time to grow and absorb nutrients and water.

During the winter, the mulch will provide protection against the harsh weather and reduce water loss. It is absolutely important that you also mulch newly planted or young trees since they do not have enough defense mechanisms yet to weather the harsh season.

When it comes to mulching, distribution is critical. Recommended thickness of the mulch is one to two inches. Placing too large a mound is not advisable because it can provide a place for bacteria and fungi to flourish.

  1. Prune Your Trees

Pruning also plays an important role in tree care during fall. Basically, there are three different types of pruning that should be done during this season:

  • Pruning branches that died during summer
  • Doing structural pruning
  • Pruning to reduce the size of the tree

To properly prune your trees, make sure to talk to a professional arborist, especially if you are not familiar with pruning techniques and methods.

  1. Check for Pests

Even when the climate has turned cooler, pests can still wreak havoc on your trees. Mites, spider mites, stink bugs, and boxelder bugs can definitely damage your trees.

Applying a systemic insecticide is one of the best ways of getting rid of pests. You’d also be glad to know that this kind of method can actually protect your trees for up to 12 months.

  1. Protect Your Trees

And of course, let’s not forget to protect our trees that are susceptible to high winds, salt, and the southwest sun. By just wrapping the trunk of a tree with a trunk wrap, or even paper and polypropylene, it can go a long way of upping the chances that your plants will emerge from the winter as robust as ever.

 

Why is fall tree care important?

Because your trees are still recovering from the extreme heat during the summer season and yet in a few weeks, they’ll be encountering cold weather. If you want your trees to recover from the summer heat and survive the winter season, then providing them with every essential nutrient and protection is absolutely helpful.

More info:

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/spring-and-fall-cleanup/

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-health-care/

 

Stocksnap.io photo by Ben Regali

30 Aug 2017
protect-tree-storm-damage

Protecting Your Trees from Storm Damage

What with their girth, large trees may seem indestructible but though they may withstand most things, hurricane-force winds, lightning, and floods brought about by non-stop rain can wreak havoc on the plants. From their root system up to their trunks and branches, extreme weather can permanently damage your trees, or even—in the case of lightning strikes—kill them outright!

However, there are plenty of ways that you can do to avoid tree storm damage from happening. Today, let’s find out some of the most effective tips to successfully storm-proof your trees. Here they are:

Keep Trees Strong and Healthy

The first, and the most effective step to storm-proof trees is by keeping them strong and healthy long before a storm arrives and ruin everything in your yard. There is no question that healthy trees can withstand most extreme weather conditions compared to weaker ones. Branches are less likely to fall and cause damages on the plants’ immediate area when the trees are strong and completely healthy.

There are several things that you can do to ensure that trees grow healthy. Providing them with proper water, regular and corrective pruning and fertilizer depending on the species are the most important steps. Just make sure to start these routines when trees are still young. Don’t wait for your trees’ health to decline before you start taking good care of them.

Trim Trees Regularly

At first, you may think that tree pruning damages your tree what with all the sawing off of branches and thinning its foliage. However, when pruning is done in the proper way, it can help trees withstand storms. It is highly advised that you start pruning your trees while they are young in order for them to develop a strong central trunk.

Pruning has a lot of advantages. Besides removing dead and weak branches, it also boosts proper structure and growth of your trees. Regularly conducting tree pruning can shape your trees in becoming more resistant to weather damage. But, the result of tree pruning greatly depends on how it is done. When done improperly, the effects of tree pruning may be counterproductive.

 

Protect Tree’s Root System

Roots may be hidden underneath the ground but they are actually critical to the total stability and strength of any tree. They can be considered as the tree’s anchor, keeping them stable even when the winds are strong enough to uproot the whole tree.

In order to keep the roots of trees deeply grounded, you have to minimize activities that may impede its growth or compromise the nutrients of the soil where your trees were planted. Some activities to be avoided include construction work and excavation.

One of the best ways to help protect your tree’s root system is by mulching the ground. Putting an extensive mulch ring around the tree’s base has numerous benefits which include preserving the nutrients and water from the soil; it even prevents weed growth.  Be careful, however, not to place the mulch too high up the trunk – the critical gas and air exchange is at the base.

 

Protect Tree Trunks As Well

Aside from the root system, the trunk of the tree should also be protected. If you are expecting a strong storm in your area, you can provide a tree’s trunk added protection by wrapping it with protective material like row cover or even burlap. These materials can protect your tree against flying debris, but need to be removed after the worst weather.

 

Plant the Right Kind of Tree

If your area frequently has storms, then you should be extra careful with the trees you are planting in your yard. There are several tree species that can withstand the storm better than any other species. As revealed by Kansas State University horticulturist Bob Neier, the red maple, red oak, linden, bald cypress, autumn blaze maple, and the Austrian pine are some of the sturdier trees.

In general, trees that are healthy endure storms way better than the rest. If you don’t want your trees to end up deteriorating due to extreme weather conditions, then be a responsible tree owner—provide the plants with proper watering, regular and corrective pruning and nutrients.

And as what we always say, talking to an expert team or arborist can also make a huge difference in how you protect your trees. These professionals are the right experts to address your concerns and questions regarding your trees.  

 

More Info:

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-health-care/

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-trimming/

 

Pixabay photo by dimitrisvetsikas1969

28 Jul 2017
climate change trees

What Trees Are Best Suited for the Changing Climate?

Climate change is a serious global environmental crisis, and yet it seems like we are extremely slow in responding to this creeping disaster. From the unpredictable weather, changes in precipitation patterns, hurricanes becoming stronger and more destructive than ever, to rising sea levels, climate change is becoming more and more evident.

Among the most effective way that we can do to stop this phenomenal crisis from ruining the entire planet is by planting trees and ensuring that they grow strong and healthy. No matter how advanced our technology has become, trees are still the best defense we have against climate change.

Trees are important in our quest to stave off global warming since they take in and store carbon dioxide and other harmful gasses before they reach the uppermost part of the atmosphere and trap the heat around the planet’s surface.

And while all plants have the capability of taking in CO2, trees can absorb more of them due to their large structure.

That said, there are several tree species that absorb and store carbon dioxide better though. If you want to really help prevent global warming, planting these so-called “climate change trees” are highly suggested. But before we identify these tree species, let’s find out first what carbon sequestration is all about.

Carbon Sequestration

The process of absorption and storage of carbon dioxide is known as carbon sequestration. Trees suck in carbon dioxide during photosynthesis, with oxygen as the waste product of the process. Experts today are already working on creating artificial carbon sequestration process to help soak up carbon dioxide but so far, trees remain to be the most effective agents. As a matter of fact, an acre of trees can absorb enough carbon dioxide that is equal to the amount produced by cars driven 26,000 miles annually.

What Trees Best Absorb CO2?

Botanists and tree experts are all working together to identify trees that can absorb and gather carbon dioxide effectively. As a matter of fact, these studies have led to the discovery that willows accumulate little carbon and emit more volatile and harmful organic compounds.

Here’s a list of trees that can be considered as the best performers in terms of helping Earth fight climate change:

  1. Silver Maple – According to the Center for Urban Forests, this fast-growing deciduous tree can trap more or less 25,000 pounds of carbon dioxide in a 55-year span.
  2. Yellow Poplar – Also known as the tulip tree, the Yellow Poplar is considered as the top C02 scrubber as revealed by a New York City study. This tree is fast-growing, and does not have any flaws that are usually seen in trees that grow fast such as weak wood quality and short lifespan.
  3. London Plane – This is thought to be a hybrid of American sycamore and oriental plane. The London plane is a large deciduous tree that grows from 66 ft to over 131 ft. The tree has been considered as one of the most effective tree species in removing pollution in urban areas.
  4. American Sweetgum – Also called as hazel pine or alligator wood, this tree is a deciduous species that thrives in the warm areas of eastern North America, including tropical regions of Central America and Mexico.
  5. Blue Spruce – Despite being widely used as an ornamental tree, this coniferous tree with blue-colored needles is also a top carbon dioxide absorber. Blue spruce originated in the Rocky Mountains.
  6. Pines – This genus has plenty of subspecies. White pines, Hispaniola, and Ponderosa are usually said as the most effective carbon dioxide catcher among conifer trees.

When choosing what trees to plant, it’s best if you consider these facts first:

  1. Trees with large leaves and wide crowns photosynthesize better.
  2.  Native tree species will grow better in their local areas; it would be best to find what trees are native to your location.
  3. Fast-growing trees scrub carbon dioxide from the atmosphere better during their first decade; it’s considered as their most productive time.
  4. When they die, trees that have a long lifespan leak less carbon dioxide during their decomposition process.

If want to contribute in what little way you can to curb this global environmental crisis, then consider planting a tree. It’s the least expensive way to offset harmful greenhouse gasses that we emit in our everyday lives.

More Info:

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/urban-forest-management/

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-drought-plan/

Pixabay photo by Bluesnap

04 Jul 2017

Frontline Defense against Wildfire: How Your Trees Can Protect You and Your Property

Useful Tips for Creating Defensible Space to Protect Your Property against Wildfire

 

Wildfires are devastating. In the state of California alone, they destroy more than a thousand man-made structures every year. If you do a Google search, you might be surprised at how common wildfires are, not just in California but in other states as well.

So how do you protect your home and property from wildfires? What can you do to help mitigate the spread of a potential wildfire in your area? Oh, and did you know that planting trees and creating a tree firewall can help prevent wildfires from destroying your property?

But preventing the spread or the occurrence of wildfires takes more than just planting trees. There’s more to it than that. For example, when trees are not planted the right way, positioned properly, or maintained regularly, they can easily become a catalyst for wildfires rather than act as protective barriers.

 

The Role of Trees and Landscape in Creating Good Defensible Space against Wildfire

It’s no secret that planting trees and shrubberies in your yard can add beauty and value to your property, as well as help control soil erosion. The downside, however, is your property essentially becomes a fire hazard.=

But wait. Don’t start removing plant life in your property just yet!

Trees, shrubberies, and other plant life will only become fire hazards if they are not planted in the right place and if they don’t undergo regular maintenance. Best practices when it comes to planting and maintenance should always be observed, especially if you live in an area prone to wildfires.

Here are a few practical tips to help you create a more effective defensible space around your property to protect it against wildfires:

  • Remove brush and shrubberies around buildings and structures. Preferably, there should be at least 30 feet of space between buildings and shrubberies. Limit brush height to no more than 18 inches within 70 feet of structures. 
  • Avoid planting chaparral-type plants in and around your property, especially if your area is prone to wildfires. Plants like chamise, yucca, sage, pine, red shank, protea, common buckwheat, honeysuckle, and other chaparral-type plants are highly flammable and will burn like oil once they catch fire. 
  • Keep your yard and the fire-safe zone around your home clean at all times. You see those dead leaves under your trees and shrubs? Make sure that they are removed regularly. Dead leaves are highly flammable and can easily catch fire. If you need to change your landscape, make sure to inquire about the rules and regulations in your area. 
  • Choose plant species carefully when planting new shrubs and trees in your property. If wildfire is a serious concern in your area, opt for fire-retardant, non-invasive plants. Consult a local plant expert to see which plants are best suited for your area. 
  • Employ proper irrigation techniques. One of the key factors that help mitigate the spread of wildfire is soil condition. If the soil in your property is healthy and irrigated properly, with the right irrigation methods, the defensive space you’ve created around your property will be more effective.

Now, what about the trees? What should you do with your trees?

 

Creating an Effective Tree Firewall around Your Property to Maximize Defensible Space

Trees provide amazing view, they offer shade on a hot afternoon sun, and they enhance the beauty of any landscape. The downside is trees can catch fire, which can quickly go out of control. So how do you transform a fire hazard into an effective barrier against wildfire?

  • Choose an appropriate tree species to plant in your property. Not all types of trees are fire hazards, although there are highly flammable ones that can burn like oil. If you live in an area prone to wildfires, make sure to select trees that have fire-retardant properties so they can serve as a barrier between your home and potential wildfires. 
  • Make sure the trees in your property are properly arranged and spaced adequately. Fire can spread more easily from tree to tree, shrub to shrub, if the plants are positioned too close together. To make keep potential fires from spreading, increase the spacing between your trees and other plant life. 
  • Keep your trees regularly maintained. Regular pruning and removing of dead branches and limbs are important. Not just for the health of the tree, but for fire prevention as well.  You should also remove branches that are too close to the ground to eliminate fuel ladders, thus keeping ground fire from reaching the crown of the tree. 
  • Consult a certified arborist in your area to help manage your landscape and develop an effective defensive fire-safe zone around your property.

 

More info:

Pixabay.com photo by skeeze

09 Jun 2017
tree lightning strike

What to Do If Your Tree Is Struck by Lightning?

Lightning can undoubtedly be considered as one of the greatest threats to massive trees.

As a matter of fact, every year, thousands of trees get struck by lightning. Moreover, it has long been proven that taking shelter under a tall tree in a thunderstorm is one of the most ill-advised things to do.

Being usually the tallest object around a given area makes a tree a natural lightning rod during tempestuous weather. There have even been recorded instances of trees getting blasted by lightning in sunny weather! And with more than 100 lightning strikes happening around the world every second, there’s a fairly good chance that your tree might get hit one of these days.

During spring and summer seasons, lightning strikes become more prevalent, and while not all trees attract lightning (short ones come to mind), it is critical that you learn how to assess lightning damage just in case your plant does get hit.

 

Assessing Tree Damage

When lightning blasts a tree, the impact can be felt instantaneously. The moment it hits, it turns the tree’s water into gas, causing the plant’s outer layers to explode outwards. This effect is catastrophic; 50% of trees hit by a bolt die immediately while others suffer extensive damage, making them vulnerable to diseases.

Among the most common tree species that get hit by lightning are oak, gum, maple, poplar, and pine trees.

 

Degree of Damage

When a tree gets hit by lightning, there are three possible outcomes: The tree escapes damage; it suffers damage but survives with nothing but a scar; it dies.

The Tree Survives

Most of the trees’ water content is stored just under the bark. With water being a superb electrical conductor, the lightning strike will penetrate the outer layers of the tree obliterate them. Lightning blasts will typically scar a tree.

The Tree Escapes Damage

There are times when heavy rain has soaked the tree’s exterior.  When this happens, there’s a chance that the lightning will just cascade around the tree and leave it relatively unscathed.

The Tree Dies

Dying trees—especially ones with an already compromised structure—will typically have one or more areas that are being ravaged by disease. Since these have most of their water content concentrated deeper in their trunk, any lightning strike can fully penetrate the plant’s center and utterly destroy the tree. This can cause a powerful explosion that will send large and small branches flying (including splinters and huge chunks of wood), and even split the trunk into two.

 

What to Do after Lightning Strikes Your Tree

Before you inspect the tree, know that there may still be a residual electric charge around the immediate area of the blast site; do not approach the tree immediately. Let a few minutes pass then take a look at the plant and assess the damage it received from the lightning strike.

The first step that you should do in treating a damaged tree is by supplying it generous amounts of water. Make sure to provide fertilizer as well to help stimulate new growth. Damaged trees that survive until the spring season are most likely to recover from a lightning strike.

Know though, that while scarred barks and broken branches can be considered as minor issues, you have to check from time to time and see that the damage hasn’t spread—trees that have damaged layers become more vulnerable to certain pests and diseases.

Another way that you can do to save a hit tree is by pruning the broken branches, including any torn wood. A word of caution however: Do not do extensive pruning until a year has passed after the lightning strike.

For trees that have suffered extensive, irreparable damage, you need to remove them from your area especially if they are near healthy trees. Leaving them there can sometimes cause numerous arboreal threats to infect your healthy trees. Consult an expert tree removal team to help you get rid of the damaged tree.

 

Tree Protection against Lightning Strikes

In order to prevent lightning from harming your trees, you may consider installing a lightning protection system that uses copper cables attached to the tree’s uppermost branches and grounded a few meters away from the tree.

Once the lightning strikes, the electricity will be diverted to the cable assembly, leaving your tree unscathed.

More info:

Tree Removal

Tree Health Care

Pixabay.com photo by AgencjaAIAC

10 May 2017
Don't Cut Down Tree Yet

I’m Not Dead! Don’t Cut Down That Tree (Yet)!

The Signs That Tell You It’s Time to Trim or Remove a Tree

Some people think that cutting down trees is a simple task. They believe that they know exactly when to do it and how to do it well. So the minute they notice that the tree has become quite difficult to manage, or when it looks like it has problems or is about to die, they hurriedly trim or cut it off. This is not the proper thing to do, though.

While a tree, especially one that’s quite tall and imposing, can sometimes pose as a hazard, you cannot simply cut it off immediately. There are some things to be considered before you decide to remove a tree. Actually, when you encounter problems like this, tree removal should be the last thing you think of. You see, trees that are old can still be used for a variety of purposes. For birds, for example, an old tree can serve as shelter. So instead of making hasty decisions, one must find time to look for answers to the question “should I cut down the tree?”

There are several questions you need to ask and signs you should consider to determine the best time for you to cut a tree.

Should I Cut Down the Tree? Signs You Need to Identify to Know the Answer

One of the best ways to find the signs that tell you it’s time to cut down a tree is to do a regular inspection of your trees. You need to take note of the overall condition of the plants. How do they look? What color are their leaves? Are any of the limbs broken? Answering these questions will help you find out the current condition of your trees.

Of course, you also need to look for signs, those that tell you that a tree is in trouble. In particular, it is important to take note of the following:

 

1. A Damaged Trunk.

If there are cracks and signs of decay everywhere, particularly on the main trunk area, chances are your tree may already be compromised and damaged. Mushrooms sprouting at the base of the tree confirm the presence of decay. If this is the case, your best action is to remove the tree. However, if the damaged area is small, there’s nothing to worry about as this can be corrected and the wounded area can be healed. In most situations, the damage is not permanent and can be reversed. So there’s no reason to trim or remove the tree.

 

2. Changes in the Color of the Leaves.

If the leaves are discolored, your tree is definitely not in the pink of health. It can be suffering from disease or it may already be dying. For situations like this, the ideal thing to do is have the tree removed with the help of a licensed and professional Arborist.

 

3. Changes in the Shape of the Tree.

Closely observe the tree. Are they any changes in its shape or form? If you notice that its shape is abnormally skewed (think of a tree with poor posture), the tree will have to be removed. Trees that are deformed are not structurally sound.

 

4. Bark Cracks and Tree Cankers.

Look at the bark of the tree and determine if there are cracks. If you see some, it means your tree is sick and may need the attention of an Arborist. In addition, the presence of tree cankers is also an indication that something is wrong with your tree. Not cutting down a tree like this will lead to more problems for you. A diseased tree will pose as a hazard; its compromised structure can eventually make it fall down easily.

 

5. Weak Branches.

A tree with weak branches is dangerous because it can cause physical danger. The branches can fall off without warning. Trees like this definitely need to be removed. This is also the reason why, most of the time, trees that are leaning too much can be a danger.

 

6. Other Signs You Need to Consider.

If there are physical structures near the tree (e.g. a house, a roof, or an electric post), it has to be cut off. Lastly, a tree that stands near a body of water has weak roots, so it should be removed.

Taking note of these signs will help you know when it is best to cut your tree.

 

More info:

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-trimming/
http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-removal/

Pixabay.com photo by kaboompics

10 Apr 2017
tree accident liability

Are Homeowners Responsible for Tree Care-Related Accidents on Their Property?

Ever wondered what would happen if a tree from your property falls and crashes on your neighbor’s car, or worse, their house? Would you be held liable?

Honestly speaking, the answer to this question is a complicated one. It greatly depends on several factors, which include state laws, the circumstances of the accident, and even the type of insurance that the homeowner possesses. Please note: The following should not be taken as legal advice. Always seek legal counsel from a professional as each situation is unique and laws vary depending on local laws. 

There are plenty of reasons that can cause a tree to fall—bad weather, construction, and old tree age.

Ultimately, however, homeowners are responsible for maintaining their house and yard and making sure that the whole property is hazard-free. This, of course, includes the trees planted there. This is the reason why proper tree maintenance and management is necessary.

 

Learn more about tree accident liability by examining these different scenarios:

Tree-Related Accidents during Extreme Weather

Severe weather disturbances like hurricanes and earthquakes have the capability of uprooting your trees. A powerful lightning strike can easily snap your tree and send it crashing into nearby houses and parked cars. Tornadoes can uproot your tree and send it crashing down. As disastrous as these examples may be, homeowners usually don’t suffer any liability in cases like this.

Since homeowners do not have the ability to predict events like these, they will not be held answerable for any damage caused by trees. The technical term for this is an “act of God.”

What about if a tree topples because a construction project you’re doing accidentally weakens its root network? This is a question tackled in the next section.

 

Tree-Related Accidents during Construction

Let’s say, you’ve hired a contractor to do some landscaping then your tree topples and crashes into your neighbor’s roof. Will you be held liable for the damages? The answer can go both ways.

Again, generally, you will be considered responsible for this accident even if you are not the one who cut the tree. If the contractor has proven that it was your instruction that caused the accident, then you will certainly be accountable for it.

If you have hired the service of a reputable contractor, and you are certain that it wasn’t your instruction that caused the accident, then you have nothing to worry since these companies also shoulder liabilities for these kinds of accidents. But if you’ve ended up hiring a dishonest and uninsured contractor, you’d be in big trouble because you will have to pay for the damages dealt from your own pocket.

You’ve probably heard this piece of advice a million times, but let me just repeat this: when seeking the help of a contractor, make sure to check first if they are insured so that you will not be held responsible for cases like tree accidents.

 

Tree-Related Accident Caused By a Dead Tree

As we have mentioned earlier, homeowners are expected all times to guarantee that their property is hazard-free. In other words, if an accident happens due to a tree that topples over, then the homeowner will certainly be held accountable for that.

Tree accidents like these can be avoided easily. If the homeowner has religiously inspected and maintained the trees in his yard, such incidents would not happen. Certainly, a diligent homeowner would notice dying trees and take care of the plants, preventing accidents from ever occurring.

In such case such as a dying tree that simply cannot be saved, availing of a tree removal service would be a very good idea; it would ensure that no case of falling timber would ever happen.

Conversely, if a claim adjuster can prove that the tree is already dead and yet you did not do anything to remove it, you’ll be faced with more consequences.

 

The Best Way of Avoiding Tree Accidents – Taking Care of Them!

It is no secret that keeping your trees healthy is one of the best ways that you can do to avoid tree accidents from occurring. Knowing the right time for a tree removal can also spare you from the legal hassles you would have to face if ever you end up inadvertently damaging the neighborhood because of negligence.

Inspect the plants yearly, provide their basic needs, and hire a tree care company if necessary.

Don’t drain your money by having to take care of damage claims every now and then. Be a responsible tree owner.

 

 

More info:

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-health-care/

http://payment.americanarborists.net/services/tree-planting/

Pixabay.com photo by FraukeFeind

07 Apr 2017
Which Bugs Are Bad For Trees?

Which Bugs Are Dangerous to the Health of My Trees?

Destructive Tree Insects You Hope to Never Find in Your Property

 

Are you sick and tired of pesky critters damaging your trees and shrubberies, eating away at the foliage until the plant ends up looking like it has been ravaged by a storm?

Seriously, how do you get over the fact that you’ve spent a lot of effort, time, and money on having your ornamental trees and garden look vibrant and beautiful only for them to be destroyed by an insect infestation?

Just imagine . . .

An elegant thriving Japanese maple tree, with its red lacy leaves adding natural beauty and luster to your garden. But because of an infestation of bugs like Japanese beetles, scales, aphids, mealybugs, and borer insects, it’s slowly withering away like an old diseased tree in autumn.

What can you do to keep this from happening to your trees and shrubberies? Is there a way to control insect infestation in trees?

The best and most practical solution is to be proactive. Prevention is the key to controlling these pests. And the way to do that is to learn to identify bugs that are bad for trees and knowing how to get rid of them before they become a serious problem.

 

Bugs Bad for Trees You Should Watch Out For

There are myriad insects that thrive on various species of plant life. Most are virtually harmless; they merely use the plants for shelter or to hunt for prey.

However, there are those who feed on the plants and cause serious damage, either from the outside-in or vice versa. These are the destructive insects you should be aware of, so you can learn to spot them and get rid of the pests before it’s too late.

There are three basic types of destructive insects that thrive on trees and other plant life; the burrowing or borer insects, the chewing or defoliating insects, and the sucking insects.

 

Burrowing Insects

Borers are perhaps the most harmful to trees out of the bunch. These types of insects, also called tunneling insects, burrow deep inside stems, twigs, and even roots to lay their eggs. It’s the larvae from the eggs that cause the most damage to the tree, hindering the tree’s ability to absorb water and nutrients.

Some of these burrowing insects include:

  • Asian Longhorned Beetle
  • Elm Bark Beetle
  • Emerald Ash Borer
  • Bronze Birch Borer
  • Dogwood Borer

The most effective method for keeping these types of insects away from your plants is through preventive measures. Always make sure that your trees are well-maintained, properly pruned, watered, and mulched. Pruning should only be done in the late fall or during winter so as not to attract insects to open cuts/wounds.

 

Defoliating Insects

If borer insects wreak havoc on trees from the inside-out, chewing or defoliating insects cause damage from the outside by eating away at the leaves, buds, and flowers. Some chewing insects, however, attack the fruit of fruit-bearing trees. The majority of these types of insects are comprised of caterpillars and beetles.

A few examples of these types of bugs include:

  • Japanese Beetle
  • Tent Caterpillar
  • Gypsy Moth
  • Spring and Fall Cankerworm
  • Cherry Fruit Worm
  • Leafminers
  • Bagworm

Once these defoliating insects are found in your trees, the best course of action is to use physical barriers to control insect movement. Certain insecticides may also be used with the approval of a Certified Arborist. But the best defense against chewing insects is proper care and maintenance.

 

Sucking Insects

As their name suggests, sucking insects inflict damage on plant life by sucking out fluids from the leaves and twigs like vampires. But instead of sucking and feeding on blood, they feed on plant juices, including the nutrients that the plant needs to thrive.

Most of these types of bugs seldom move or migrate. They typically stay in one location, living under a hard protective coating. Their byproduct is a sticky substance called honeydew, which contains unprocessed plant material and often promotes mold growth that can harm the tree foliage.

Sucking insects include:

  • Aphids
  • Spider Mites
  • Thrips
  • Leafhoppers
  • Scale Insects

The best recommendation for controlling the spread of sucking insects is to immediately kill them on contact to prevent reproduction. But of course, proper tree care and maintenance is always an effective approach.

 

More info:

 

Flickr photo by the U.S. Department of Agriculture

01 Apr 2017
Stump Removal Methods

4 Tree Stump Removal Methods (Plus 1 Foolish One)

Comparing Stump Removal Techniques – Examining Safety and Efficiency of the Most Common Methods

 

Okay, removing a tree stump isn’t exactly a simple task. To get right down to the point, the absolute worst thing you can do when trying to remove a tree stump is to do it on your own without the right tools or the expertise on how to go about the job in a safe and efficient manner.

 

So after all that, do you still want to learn more about the different tree stump removal methods, or are you going the amateur route and try to do it with guns blazing?

If you want to approach the stump removal process the right way, below are a few things you need to know.

You see, there are a number of ways to remove a tree stump, with varying difficulties and cost. Each method has its own positives and negatives you have to consider if you’re going to decide which stump removal technique to go with. So, let’s get to the nitty-gritty, shall we?

 

Stump Removal through Chemical Process

There are chemical products that can speed up the rotting process of a dead tree stump so that it can be easily removed. These products are available at any local hardware store that sells gardening materials.

A standard stump remover usually contains potassium nitrate to help accelerate the decomposition process. Others use chemical fertilizers rich in nitrogen to promote bacterial growth, which then facilitates the gradual decay of the stump.

Pros:

  • Easy to apply. All you need to do is drill deep holes in the stump, place the chemicals in the holes, and leave it to rot.
  • It’s an inexpensive stump removal method. Most stump removers cost less than $20.

Cons:

  • This method is potentially dangerous, especially when there are children and pets around. You’re using strong chemicals here.
  • The chemical process takes a long time to complete. It can take weeks up to a month, maybe even more.

 

Stump Removal through Mechanical Process

Stump grinders are the most popular mechanical tool designed to remove tree stumps. These machines have sharp rotating teeth that can easily grind through dead tree stumps like butter.

Pros:

  • You can go through the stump removal process rather quickly using the equipment.
  • It doesn’t require a high skill level to operate properly.

 

Cons:

  • Rental units are relatively smaller, and less powerful, compared to commercial versions. So it may take more time and effort than you expect to complete the task.
  • Rental versions are mainly designed to remove one or two tree stumps that are less than 10 inches in diameter. Anything more than that and you’re in trouble.

 

Stump Removal through Manual Process

If you feel like working up a sweat, then manually digging out the stump will surely give you a great workout. All you need is a shovel for digging, some type of saw for cutting up the roots, a pickaxe for wrenching and softening the soil, and protective gear.

Pros:

  • This is a cost-effective method for removing a tree stump.
  • It can give you a tough cardiovascular workout.

Cons:

  • It’s a physical and potentially dangerous job. You can easily injure yourself if you’re not careful.
  • This process is only effective if you’re dealing with a relatively small tree stump. Trees that have huge roots that go really deep into the ground will not be easy to remove manually.

 

Stump Removal through Natural Process

Here’s a nice alternative for removing tree stumps: just let it decompose naturally. If you find that the stump doesn’t really bother you that much, just leave it in the ground to rot. Covering it with fertilizer, soil, or even mulch should help speed up the decay as fungus and bacteria start to flourish. In several months, the stump can easily be removed with minimal effort.

Using fire to remove tree stumps is a popular method, but it’s not advisable. It’s potentially dangerous and the fire could easily get out of control. And using your pickup truck to pull the stump out is really an amateur move. It’s still best to contact a professional to help with the removal process.

Hey, if you can afford to hire a professional to have a tree removed from your property, certainly a few extra bucks to remove the stump shouldn’t be a problem, right?

 

More info:

 

Stocksnap.io photo by Oisin Conolly