Trees provide Portland homeowners with a wide variety of benefits which increase as a tree grows in size and age. However, larger, more mature trees are also more likely to develop unwanted hazards like deadwood or root problems on the property they inhabit.
No matter the hazard, property owners in the City of Roses, should recognize any potential risks and remedy them with effective management strategies to ensure their trees are healthy, strong, and beautiful. That’s why Westcoast Tree Care would like to provide you with the following ultimate guide to managing hazards and risks associated with these beautiful giants.
Tree Risk Assessment
Trees are significant assets to our home and city. However, when a tree falls or a branch damages property below, they become a liability. Understanding and managing the risks associated with urban trees will make your property safe and prolong the life of your tree.
The certified arborist at Westcoast Tree Care can help you manage the trees on your property and provide you with services that help to reduce any risks associated with certain trees. As a tree care professional that is ISA Certified, we are trained to provide you with an assessment that may suggest one or more of the following:
- Removal of susceptible property. While a home and nearby power lines cannot be moved, it is possible, however, to remove property like cars and other targets that may be susceptible to a hazardous tree.
- Selective pruning. A certified arborist can safely remove deadwood and hazardous branches.
- Preventative tree care. Large, mature trees need ongoing, routine care in the form of pruning, watering, mulch, disease, and insect control.
- Tree removal. Usually reserved as a last resort option, some trees with unacceptable hazards are best removed altogether.
Dealing With Storm Damage
Wind, rain, snow, and ice can have a lasting impact on your trees and landscape. Not only can severe weather flood and penetrate the soil, but it can break branches and overturn trees. During and after a storm, the failure of any part of a tree can cause significant harm or damage to nearby property, people, and power lines.
Portland homeowners can follow the below steps to help ensure a safe and effective response to unexpected storm damage:
- Assess the safety of a tree.
- Ensure safety precautions are in place.
- Resist taking on any trimming, pruning, and tree removal tasks yourself.
- Contact a certified arborist as soon as possible.
Avoiding Construction Damage
New homes and building are often constructed around existing trees to take advantage of the many benefits they provide. Unfortunately, however, the construction process can prove harmful and even fatal to nearby trees. That’s why proper planning and care are important when it comes to preserving the health and structural integrity of trees located on construction sites. A certified arborist can work with you to ensure the trees on your property are effectively protected throughout each phase of the construction process.
A certified arborist and building contractor should work together before the start of any construction process. Even the smallest changes to the environment can leave a lasting impact on the health and integrity of nearby trees.
Erect Safety Barriers
The most effective way to prevent unwanted damage to nearby trees during the construction process is to erect safety barriers that prevent any equipment from touching a tree and its roots. Even more, you can limit construction site access to only one entrance and exit. This will help prevent soil compaction and root damage.
Communicate With Your Builder
Clear communication with your builder and any subcontractors is especially important when it comes to maintaining the health and integrity of nearby trees.
Dealing With Construction Damage
Dealing with construction damage can be devastating to Portland homeowners who love and care for the trees on their property. While certain remedies can save damaged trees, immediate treatment is critical. If you have trees that have been damaged due to recent construction, a certified arborist can assess the health and integrity of your trees and recommend any necessary treatment options.
Inspection & Assessment
Because construction damage can affect the structural integrity of a tree, a certified arborist will inspect it for any potential risks. A tree care assessment may involve something as simple as a visual inspection or the use of instruments to check for the presence of decline or decay. By identifying risks, potential safety hazards can be reduced or eliminated altogether.
Common Construction Damage:
- Physical injury to the trunk and crown of a tree.
- Soil compaction and damage to the root system.
- An increase in wind and sunlight exposure.
- Stress due to grade and drainage modifications.
Treating Trunk & Crown Injuries
Pruning & Trimming. Broken, split, or torn branches should be removed. Dead or diseased limbs should also be removed from the crown of a tree. However, it’s important not to thin or reduce the canopy of a tree to compensate for root loss.
Cabling & Bracing. If a tree needs additional support, a certified arborist may be able to install cables and bracing rods to help it recover from construction damage. However, these support systems will need to be inspected regularly.
Damaged Bark & Trunk Wounds. If the bark or trunk of a tree is damaged, it may be necessary to remove any jagged edges. However, this should only be done by a certified arborist to prevent cutting into living tissues.
Irrigation & Drainage. One of the most important things to focus on after construction damage it to make sure a tree is receiving an adequate amount of water. However, it’s important a tree doesn’t receive too much or too little either. Poor drainage and flooding can ultimately cause a tree to decline or fail altogether.
Mulching. Mulch is one of the best things you can provide for a construction damaged tree. Mulch provides an insulating buffer from temperatures, retains, water, and prevents weeds from growing. Apply mulch around the base of a tree in a 3-10 foot area 2-4 inches deep without physically touching the trunk of a tree.
Monitoring for Risks of Decline
Despite your best efforts, you may lose a tree due to hazards and risks. Symptoms of decline include a loss of foliage, discolored leaves, and decay. Stressed trees are especially prone to unwanted disease and insect infestation further leading to its decline or even death. That’s why it’s important to monitor for risks and consult with a certified arborist for a professional assessment if you are concerned with the health of your tree.
Portland Tree Care
If you would like to learn more about managing the hazards and risks associated with the trees on your property, contact Westcoast Tree Care at 1.800.767.8733. Our certified arborist would be more than happy to answer any questions you may have along with a no-cost, no-obligation quote for any of our tree care services.