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Ready for scary stories this Halloween? Your trees' roots, trunk and crown may have something to tell you.

The Scary Truth About Structurally Weak Trees

October 30, 2014

Ghosts and goblins roam the streets, jack-o-lanterns light up on every porch and a dark spooky sky illuminates above. It sounds like Halloween is here! With all the spooks and spirits this time of year, be on the lookout for scary trees that may blend in with the seasonal décor.

Trees on your property can be great visual assets, but what happens when they become unsafe, unsightly or a downright liability? Davey’s R.J. Laverne, board certified master arborist, shares some insight on a “Talking Trees” segment about signs and symptoms we can look for that can tell us if a scary, unsightly tree should be removed.  Here are some things to look at when inspecting a tree:


1. What’s happening with the roots? Visually inspect the root zone and root collar for damage, decay or fungus. Some signs that a tree’s roots are decaying include peeling, cracking or loose bark. 

2. Turn to the trunk. Inspect the trunk for obvious swelling that could identify advanced decay within the trunk.

3. Look up to the crown. Check for dead or hanging branches, or limbs that lack bark and show no sign of life. Dead or hanging branches are not only scary looking, but they could also fall down at any time. Check for a lack of fine twigs that have living buds at the end of branches. A decaying crown can indicate the entire tree is on the decline.

If you have any suspicion your tree is starting to struggle or decline, contact your local, professionally trained Davey arborist for help. We can conduct a full inspection to let you know whether your tree has crossed the line from asset to liability. 

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