In a previous blog, we outlined the why in “Why You Should Remove Dead Trees From Your Yard,” but how do you know that your tree is dead or dying? There always seems to be a couple of dead branches or discolored leaves, but that doesn’t mean that your tree has called it quits and needs to be taken down. You should call a certified arborist for a second opinion before you contract a tree cleanup service or, only if you’re qualified, take your own tools to it, but there several signs to look out for when it comes to an injured or old tree that might be on its way out.
1. Peeling Bark
A healthy tree has healthy bark, and that might look a little bit different across species. In general, bark that is peeling unnaturally, is brittle, or is falling off signifies that there may be an issue with the tree. Do some research before you begin to worry though, because some trees, such as the Shagbark Hickory, Paperbark Maple, American Sycamore, and many strains of the birch tree all have bark that peels naturally.
2. Presence of Fungus On or Near Tree
Fungus feeds on decomposing matter, so it can be a great indicator that there is rot in or near your tree. If you see fungus shelves across your tree’s trunk, growing on exposed roots, or on the ground where the tree’s roots would be buried, then you’ll want to get a professional opinion on the tree’s health and whether or not you can treat it effectively.
3. Lack of Foliage
We all know that the leaves of most trees will change color and drop in the autumn and winter seasons, but if you notice all the other trees growing leaves, fruit, and flowers well into the spring and summer, but one tree is not, then it might be a sign of illness or death. Check the tree for other symptoms or contact an arborist if you have a dead-looking tree when it should be in full bloom!
All trees grow towards the sun, and if structures or other obstructions stop a tree from getting the sunlight it needs in a straight line, then it will naturally grow at an angle and its root system will grow in a way that counterbalances the distribution of weight. But, if you previously had a tree growing towards the open sky that abruptly takes a turn and begins leaning, or you begin to see roots detaching from the ground at one side, then that’s a big sign your tree is unstable, dead, or dying.
5. No Green Under the Bark or Brittle Branches
You may have noticed that if you try breaking a stick off of a healthy tree that unless you have a sharp too to cut it, it’s very hard to tear or break past the green layer directly under the bark. If you can easily break multiple branches off or scratch the trunk of the tree and find no living layer under the bark, that means the tree has no nutrients being delivered and is likely dead.
6. Open Wounds or Cracks
Open wounds can be made by a variety of man-made or natural forces, including:
- Lightning Strikes
- Construction or Car Accidents
- Storms and High Winds
- Animal or Insect Damage
- Improper Trimming
- Moisture and Ice Damage
These wounds – especially if they are in a vertical, up-and-down position – can be difficult for trees to heal from on their own. With intervention from professionals, there is a possibility that your tree will survive, but it’s all dependent on the severity of the wound, how long the wound has been there, and the overall health of the tree.
Call Moon Dumpsters for Backyard Tree Cleanup
Do you have a dead tree that you have the skills and ability to take down yourself, but the resulting wood and woodchips won’t fit in your regular yard waste bin? Moon has you covered! We have dumpsters for yard debris of any size ranging from 6-40 cubic yards. Call us today to get our residential roll-off driveway dumpster to your worksite and experience the protection and quality waste removal that Moon guarantees!
Consider renting a Moon Mini Dumpster, no matter what size project you choose to undertake. Our driveway dumpsters come in 6, 9, 12, 16, 20, 30, and 40 cubic yard capacities. Affordable and lightweight, a dumpster will be delivered directly to you and placed on boards for surface protection. We are environmentally-friendly, locally-owned, and willing to work with any time frame. Give us a call at 502-772-2821 to learn more!