With a substantial amount of trees failing in the high winds in recent weeks the question I get asked a lot is “Is my tree safe?”, it is probably the question we are asked most frequently but we cannot always provide a definite answer (Unless blatantly obvious).
How do we determine the health of a tree?
There are many things a tree surgeon looks for when determining the likelihood of the tree failing, and there can be many factors to take into account e.g. species, location, soil type.
Sometimes a tree can become less stable if there has been a removal of a large structure or tree in the same area which may have been providing a wind break. The ground can also change dramatically which can affect the tree.
Diseases are a major factor in the stability of trees, there are thousands of different types of diseases which affect the tree in different ways, some act fast and some not so fast, some diseases aren’t even harmful to the tree.
If the tree has a disease it will most likely show some sign, this could be in form of a fungi bracket, deadwood etc. But this is not always the case, sometimes diseases are not so obvious and show very little presence.
Other scenarios we may take into account is the potential damage the tree could cause to warrant the works carried out to said tree e.g. proximity to road, structures within falling distance.
If you can’t answer the question for definite, what’s the point?
An experienced tree surgeon should be able to decide what the best course of action is based on multiple of the above factors. It is important to have your trees checked regularly as it is better to nip it in the bud. The earlier the diagnosis the lesser the potential risk!
Although removal of the tree is less desired, this may sometimes be the only way to act on certain situations. Sometimes a simple crown thin or reduction will suffice to alleviate the weight and sail, therefore reducing the chances of failure. There are instances where this work would not be beneficial to the health of the tree, for example – if the reduction wasn’t carried out correctly or by the right percentage, the tree can be adversely affected and lose its structural stability.
It’s very important to enlist a reputable tree surgery business to undertake the survey and to carry out works and there should be certain key questions to ask your tree surgeon:
- Are you fully insured?
- Are your staff fully qualified and competent to carry out works?
- How will the waste be disposed of?
Also if you are unsure of whether or not there are protection orders present at your property (Conservation Area, TPO’s) ask the tree surgeon to carry out all the relevant checks prior to works commence.
If you need an experienced tree surgeon please do not hesitate to contact us on 0116 2600419!