News and Blog Articles
News and Blog Articles
With the days getting warmer and summer on its way, you and your family will probably be spending more of your free time outside. As you enjoy the sunshine, you might realize that some of your trees don’t look so healthy. Maybe their leaves are dying, or maybe they’re riddled with holes. Either way, those trees can and should make you nervous, because if they fail, they can cause bodily harm as well as property damage.
But how do you know what’s actually a cause for concern?
Though not all indications of decline are easily visible, by keeping your eye out for these five common signs, you will know when it’s time to call your friendly neighborhood arborist!
Dead, Dying or Discolored Leaves
Perhaps one of the easiest signs to notice is when your tree’s leaves behave abnormally.
Sometimes, leaves will die and fall from only one area of your tree; this might indicate that a particular limb is dead or dying. While this is normal, and the tree will eventually drop this limb, it is better to have an arborist go ahead and remove that limb for safety reasons and the overall health of the tree.
Mushrooms and Fungus and Conks, Oh My!
There are an endless array of fungi that can grow on your tree, and not all of them are a bad sign; the best course of action if you notice some mushrooms or strange plants appearing on or around your tree is to have a professional arborist perform a simple evaluation to determine the tree’s health. If, after reading this, you’re already thinking of a couple of trees with fungi that might need attention, please give us a call! We offer free estimates, and will investigate the state of your tree and advise whether it needs treatment or removal; an estimate also gives you the cost of the different treatment and removal options, so you can make the most informed decision possible.
Insects, Bugs, and Other Pests
Though insects and bugs are vital to our ecosystem, we often don’t want to see them—especially in the house! When you notice something like apparent sawdust on your porch, you probably immediately investigate the two most common culprits: carpenter bees and termites. If you notice sawdust around your tree, you should have the same reaction. Those tell-tale little piles of sawdust indicate that insects have burrowed into your tree, and if they’re burrowing, the wood inside is probably dead or dying.
Other indications of insects making a home out of your tree include: small pinholes in limbs or tree trunks that indicate an insect’s entry point, dried sap (called resin masses or pitch tubes) on the outside of the tree that leaks after a bug gets in, and even woodpeckers jackhammering away, looking for a tasty meal. Some species of insect will also impact the leaves of your tree; if you see mottled brown spots, or strips of discoloration, or randomly dispersed holes, this might indicate the presence of insects. These insects might also gather on the underside of your leaves without doing too much damage to the leaves themselves, so if you suspect an infestation, be sure to check.
Did You Know?
One of the most common infestations of pine trees in our area is the pine beetle, also knows as the southern pine beetle, or Dendroctonus frontalis.
Canker Sores – Not Just for Your Mouth!
The term canker sore probably evokes unpleasant memories of the tiny ulcers that develop in the mouth and on or around the lips, making eating and drinking uncomfortable and even painful. Trees can also develop little sores, referred to as cankers, that leave them vulnerable to further damage, insect infestation, and rot. Cankers often appear on trees plagued by fungi growing between the bark and actually tree trunk, but can be caused by things as simple as damage from your lawn mower or even rough hail.
Cavities and Hollows
If you’ve ever been on a hike, to a park, or wandered through the woods, you’ve probably seen a tree with a cavity, and thought it looked rather cool. These hollows seem like the perfect place for a cute squirrel or mama owl to nest; children’s books often depict these holes as such, suggesting that these occurrences are normal and no cause for concern.
So What Can You Do?
Some cases of insects and fungi growth can be treated. The best thing you can do is keep a close eye on your trees, and have a trained, experienced arborist evaluate anything questionable. The quicker the decay is addressed, the easier it is to reduce the risk of danger to you and your family. At Classic City Arborists, we offer free estimates that include Scott, our certified arborist, coming out to your property to closely inspect the trees you’re concerned about and offer his professional opinion on the best course of action, as well as some estimates for the cost of those actions.
Even if you don’t call us, or if you find another company that you’d like to work with, we strongly recommend you find a company that is licensed and insured for the safety of you, your family, your property, and your trees!
Emily Casuccio is sister and sister-in-law to Rebekah and Scott Rushing, and has over half a decade of experience in copywriting, copyediting, proofreading, and developmental storyboarding. She's worked with both published and undiscovered authors on both fiction and nonfiction, and takes pride in supporting local businesses. Her passion lies in the written word and helping authors of all capacities realize their dreams and achieve their fullest potential. To learn more about her, read samples of her work, or contact her, visit her online portfolio.
Cankers: Bad For Humans and Trees
Southern Pine Beetles: When Beetles Attack
Apple Tree: Dead Leaves
Fungal Conks on the Side of a Tree
Insects on Underside of Leaf
Mushrooms on the Base of a Tree
Pine Tree with Beetle Infestation
Sawdust at the Base of a Tree
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