What Actions to Take When Your Tree Is About to Fall

man cutting tree branch

Don’t wait until your tree falls on your car, your house, or your neighbor’s yard. Learn about the signs that your tree is about to fall and what you can do about it.

Even if the tree in your yard has been standing strong for thirty years now, it doesn’t mean that it can’t fall victim to disease and decay. If you don’t use suitable horticulture practices, it can experience damage early on. And when it succumbs to the rot, your tree can easily fall over without much warning.

A falling tree is dangerous to both property and people alike. However, most homeowners don’t notice that their tree is about to fall until it’s too late. Don’t make the same mistake. Here are the signs that your tree is about to fall and what you should do before it does.

Signs that your tree might fall

Many things can cause your tree to fall. Examples include poor fertilization, improper location, malnutrition, insect infestation, and storm damage. Usually, these conditions manifest in visible signs, which can warn you when your tree is about to fall over.

1. Dead branches

Do branches fall off of your tree more often than usual? This phenomenon is the tree’s way of “self-pruning.” It does this because there may not be enough nutrients for the entire tree, which is why it is trying to get rid of some of its branches. If your tree is shedding its branches, call an arborist before a particularly large branch damages property or the tree itself starts decaying.

2. Leaning

Once you notice that the trunk of your tree is unusually titled, possibly due to storm or root damage, it’s wise to call in a tree removal expert as soon as possible. Leaning trees that did not naturally grow at that angle pose a risk of falling even minimal agitation.

3. Hole or cavity in the trunk

When a tree sheds its branches, it leaves a hole or a cavity in the trunk, which can leave the tree susceptible to disease and decay. Although that doesn’t automatically mean that the tree will fall over, it’s a good sign that you need to get it checked out by a specialist. However, ignoring the problem will increase the chances of your tree falling over eventually.

4. Missing bark or deep cracks

Deep cracks in the trunk indicate weakness in the tree, and a missing bark is a sign that the tree is dying. If you notice either of the two on your tree, it may be about to fall.

What to do about a tree that might fall

lumberjackThe best way to prevent a tree from falling in the first place is by taking good care of it. Here are some suggestions on how to do that:

  • Plant the tree in an appropriate location.
  • Fertilize the soil around the tree to give it enough nutrients.
  • Call in an arborist at the first sign of disease, infestation, decay, etc.
  • Trim the tree as needed.
  • Protect the tree from storm damage.
  • Water trees during non-rainy seasons.
  • Spread mulch around the trunk.

A falling tree is a danger to everything and everyone around it, including houses, cars, passersby, and pets. Thus, if you notice one or more signs of a tree that is in danger of falling over, have an arborist come over and take a look.

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