How to Spot Dying or Dead Trees in Your Yard

You can often tell when something is off about the trees in your backyard. You may notice fungus sticking out from the dried branches or browning leaves or trunks riddled with holes from pests. However, it is not always clear how much trouble your tree could be in. Here are four tips to help you spot dying or dead trees in your yard.

1. Brittle Bark or Trunks with Vertical Cracks

Dying trees have loose bark which starts to fall off the tree. You may also spot vertical cracks on the branches and trunks. Deep splits into the wood of the tree can cause cavities that provide safe havens for pests and fungus growth. The cracks will weaken the tree, making it a hazard. You may need to call in a certified arborist to confirm the condition of the tree and arrange for tree removal services.

2. Few Healthy Leaves

One of the most tell-tale signs of a dying tree is reduced leaf coverage during the growing season. It may be harder to track during winter when most deciduous plants shed their leaves. Coniferous evergreens start to show brown, yellow, or red needles. Bare branches in times when the plant shouldn’t be (think spring and summer) may indicate a serious issue with your tree. Deciduous dead trees won’t have any leaves at all during the growing season or have brown leaves if the tree just recently died.

3. Fungus and Pest Infestation

Make a habit of regularly inspecting your trees’ trunks and the base area near the roots. A vast majority of fungi are saprophytic, meaning they feed on dead organic matter. Spotting fungus growing on the trunks may indicate dead trees. You may need to confirm with a certified arborist before organizing for tree removal. Look out for discolored or depressed areas on the bark, mushrooms growing on the base. The decay may continue, creating hazardous trees with structural stability issues.

4. Tree Is Suddenly Leaning on One Side

Odd growth patterns can indicate general weakness. Large trees that tip over during storms seldom recover and may require a tree cutting service. If your trees start leaning more than 15 degrees from the vertical position, you may need to call in arborists to check on their health.

It isn’t always easy to determine if your tree is in great shape. If you believe your tree may be sick, dying, or dead, contact JL Tree Service today. Our certified arborist will come to take a look at your trees to help you determine the best possible option for you.

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