8 Signs of a Sick Tree Learn How to Spot Potential Tree Hazards on Your Property.

Your trees provide shade, beauty, and character to your home and yard. The last thing you want is to cut down a treasured tree that doesn’t need to be removed. However, a sick tree can be a danger to both your house and your family. If your tree shows any signs of insect damage, disease, or instability, please call Michael Virgil, Licensed Tree Expert, for a Hazardous Tree Assessment to determine if your tree can be saved, or if your tree must be removed.

Mushroom-Type Fungi Growing at the Base of the Tree

mushroom fungus growth at the base of a tree

The image to the left is known as Root Rot, Honey Fungus, or, more properly, Armillaria Root Rot. Many fungi can be responsible for this symptom, however, especially depending on the tree. Fungal tree diseases in trees will weaken the structure of the tree, creating a potentially severe hazard. Fungal diseases are not always a death sentence. A Licensed Tree Expert can diagnose, treat, or safely remove a diseased tree.

Sawdust Along the Trunk Base or Root Zone

saw dust at the base of a tree

Your first guess when you see a mound of sawdust at the base of a tree may be termites. However, while termites can severely damage a tree, they do not leave evidence at the scene of the crime in the form of piles of sawdust. The likely culprit here is the carpenter ant.  Carpenter Ants create tunnels through the wood of a tree to create nests, thus creating these piles of sawdust that collect at the base of the tree. If left untreated, your tree can become unstable and eventually die.

Cracks in the Trunk or Major Limbs

crack in branch of tree

Any kind of cracking in the trunk of a tree or any of major limbs is a cause for serious concern.  Tree failure is a major cause of property damage.  If you notice any cracking in the trunk or major limbs contact a licensed tree expert to perform an onsite inspection to properly assess your tree and  to help prevent tree failure.  Two of the most common causes of tree cracking are ice and storm damage, however, further inspection may reveal a health problem with the tree itself.

Hollow or Decayed Areas

hollow space in tree trunk

Tree wounds commonly cause the hollowing and decay of trees.  Trees in urban and suburban areas are more susceptible to the decay and hollowing of trees due to the level of human activity, however these can occur anywhere. Trees that are hollowing or show signs of decay should be inspected to help minimize any damage they could cause in the event of failure.

Wilted or Discolored Leaves

yellowing of leaves

Wilted and discolored leaves, can be caused by a great many conditions.  The most typical causes are a variety of insects and diseasesChlorosis, which is often caused by incorrect soil PH, can cause the leaves in certain trees to yellow.  An expert should be able to properly diagnose and possibly correct the issues causing the tree to discolor and wilt.

Insect Damage

scale on tree limbs

Insects are becoming a greater problem for us on the east coast as shipping pallets from around the world bring in invasive creepy crawlies. Some insect infestations are easily treated, while others should elicit an immediate reaction and contact with the NJDEP to prevent the spread of extremely dangerous insects. Insect infestations in trees must be dealt with by licensed tree experts to prevent the spread of insect colonies.

Dead Branches

dead tree branches

Dead tree branches, as pictured here, obviously can be dangerous and should be dealt with immediately.  Damaged, decaying and dead branches should be removed as soon as possible.  If not an immediate risk, the best time to prune is in late winter or early spring.

Man-Made Wounds

tree bark damaged by car

A majority of tree damage is caused by us humans improperly trying to perform tree maintenance.  Sometimes simply cutting off a branch that does not look right is not the best choice for the health of a tree.  Trees can be injured by lawn mowers and weed trimmers continually stripping away bark from the trunk of the tree.  Excavation to local land and soil can damage roots and quickly harm trees. And lastly, lets not forget those young lovers and the need to carve their initials into a tree.

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Proudly Providing Tree & Landscaping Services to The Following Northwest New Jersey Areas Since 2000:

Serving Warren County, NJ Including:

• Hackettstown • Washington
• Belvidere • Phillipsburg
• Hope • Blairstown

Serving Sussex County, NJ Including:

• Vernon • Sparta
• Newton • Hopatcong
• Andover • Stanhope

Serving Morris County, NJ Including:

• Chatham • Mendham
• Rockaway • Denville
• Dover • Mountain Lakes

Serving Hunterdon County, NJ Including:

• Clinton • Califon
• Flemington • Lebanon
• Bloomsbury • Frenchtown

Serving Somerset County, NJ Including:

• Bridgewater • Somerville
• Franklin • Branchburg
• Raritan • Watchung

As Well as Nearby, Surrounding Areas.

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