During the harsh winter months, rain and snow, freezing temperatures, and heavy winds can produce fierce storms. This is especially true in Eugene, Oregon where we’ve recently experienced a record snowfall. The intensity of these storms can be especially harmful to trees and problematic to homeowners. Trees that are subjected to winter storms may incur injuries and breakage that can cause unwanted property damage and harm to people and pets below. That’s why Westcoast Tree Care would like to provide you with the following guidelines when it comes to assessing and dealing with winter snow damage.
Check Your Property
Before conducting an assessment of your trees, always be sure to inspect your property for environmental hazards. Heavy winds and snow can cause power lines to be ripped from their supporting poles, exposing live wires. If you spot any collapsed wires, it’s important to stay far away from them and contact your local power company immediately. Additionally, survey your trees for any fallen or suspended branches that have cracked and broken. Even the slightest gust of wind can shift a tree’s weight, causing broken branches to plummet to the ground. As such, it’s important to avoid a tree in this state and contact the certified arborist at Westcoast Tree Care to have these branches promptly removed.
Assess Your Trees For Storm Damage
Inspect your trees for visible signs of storm damage. You can do this by examining the base of a tree to see if cracks, splits, holes, or cavities have formed in the trunk. These can render a tree more susceptible to insect infestation and disease in the spring and summer months. Even more, these types of injuries can promote wood decay and deadwood. When assessing the base of a tree, you should also check for root heaving. If a tree’s root system has breached the surface of the soil, this can indicate that the structural integrity of the tree has been compromised. In such an event, the tree may need to be removed.
Once you have thoroughly assessed the base of a tree, it’s important to observe its positioning in the ground. If a tree is leaning considerably to one side, it could indicate that the tree is unstable and on the verge of falling over. If the base of a tree appears intact and in an upright, vertical position, inspect its branches next. Breakage due to ice and heavy snow are common in the winter months.
If a tree has sustained any serious injuries to its trunk, root system, or branches contact the certified arborist at Westcoast Tree Care to ascertain the extent of the damage. Even more, be wary of injured trees, as they can be deemed hazardous, and could fail at any time.
Pruning Defective Branches
Trees may need to be pruned to remove defective branches in order to prevent further damage to its crown. Pruning can not only improve a tree’s future growth but reduce the potential for decay while safeguarding it against disease and insect infestations. However, it’s important not to take on the task of pruning a tree yourself. Pruning a tree is dangerous work that must only be done by a trained professional who has the proper equipment.
Removing Snow from Branches
It can be disheartening to see the branches of a tree bent over with the weight of heavy snow and ice. However, it’s important to avoid shaking its limbs. The branches of a tree are much more flexible than they look. Attempting to knock or shake the snow off can actually snap them back and cause sudden breakage. If snow must be removed, it’s important to gently push upwards on a branch to relieve it of the additional weight.
Winter Tree Removal
Winter storms can damage trees in such a way that they may need to be removed immediately. A broken tree is a dangerous hazard that needs to be addressed as soon as any damage is spotted. Removal is often warranted to reduce the potential of harm or unwanted property damage.
Eugene Tree Care
If you have any questions about how to inspect your trees for winter storm damage or would like to speak to the certified arborist at Westcoast Tree Care about any of our services, contact us at 1.800.767.8733 today. We would be more than happy to assess the trees on your property and provide you with a no-cost, no-obligation quote.