Storm Related Tree Damage
Storms can wreak havoc on roads, streets, houses, and you your trees, leading to all kinds of damage. Every year thousands of shade and street trees are lost due to ice, lightning and wind. Trees damaged in storms can lead to huge financial losses.
There are main types of damage your trees can suffer in a storm.
- Blow Over – High winds physically push the tree over. There is little in the biological makeup of a tree to make it through a tornado, down draft or hurricane. Poor maintenance, past tree abuse and pest problems can make the trees more susceptible to damage.
- Stem Failure – Trees don’t heal wounds. They grow over the old wound and seal it off. This means that your tree caries its damaged wood with it and these damaged areas have the potential to fail under certain loads.
- Crown Twist – The tree crown is the leaves and the supporting branches and twigs. No tree is symmetrically perfect in all directions. In fact, many trees have a very lopsided crown. If the wind loads up one side of the crown more than the other it can cause the crown to twist, magnifying old injuries and the stem will split or collapse.
- Branch Failure – Branches that are not attached properly can be weak and therefore susceptible to failure during a storm.
- Root Failure – There are two root types – woody structural roots and fine absorbing roots. Absorbing roots have a very large surface area but they are weak. Structural roots have a small surface area but they are strong. If roots are diseased, damaged or constrained the roots can fail.
Checking your trees regularly and dealing with any problems is a good way to reduce the amount of damage your trees suffer during a storm.