Trees provide much-needed shade, reduce soil erosion, act as a sound buffer, and produce oxygen while filtering out harmful particles in the air. They are a great asset to any yard. However, when they are in poor health, they can pose a risk to your home’s exterior. Sometimes it’s not easy to determine if a tree is ailing. When is it time to remove a tree from your property? Here are some signs to help you decide.
Tree is Sick
The most obvious reason to remove a tree is that it has become diseased (viral, bacterial, and fungal) or infested (insects and pests). In most cases by the time a tree shows obvious symptoms, it is typically no longer treatable. When trees fall sick to a virus, bacteria, or fungus, it could spread to other trees on your property if the source tree is not removed.
Tree has Visible Damage
If trees display visible signs of damage such as vertical cracks, horizontal “blisters,” dead branches, dead branch stubs, and other kinds of scarring, the damage will only make the tree more vulnerable over time.
Tree is Leaning
As it grows, a tree can lean naturally to one side. However, if trees in your backyard or front yard suddenly lean, this might be a sign that its roots are rotted and the tree is dead. A new lean, particularly after a windstorm or a heavy rainfall, can also be an indication that the tree’s root system is unable to anchor the tree to the ground and might already be dead or in the process of dying.
Tree Grows too Large
Trees can grow too large for their location. When that happens it could have negative consequences if it creates a blind spot for drivers, the roots interfere with drainage systems, or it could do other kinds of damage to your home’s exterior.
Tree Grows too Close
A tree growing too close to power lines is a threat to you and your neighbours. Limbs that stretch out toward lines should be trimmed regularly to avoid causing power outages or becoming potential fire hazards. However, if repeated pruning isn’t the solution to fast-growing trees coming into contact with power lines, it’s probably best to remove it.
Tree falls Over
After a violent storm, trees can become so damaged by lightning, wind, and/or heavy continuous rain they are no longer secure in the ground. The tree falling on the roof and gutters, a person, or crashing through windows becomes a very real danger.
Tree Removal is a Process
When the trees on your property display any of the above signs, removal might be necessary. The City of Vancouver has implemented a by-law that limits when trees can be removed from residential properties. If the reason for the tree’s removal is valid, in order to proceed, a person must apply for a permit. Other municipalities in the Lower Mainland might have similar enforceable bylaws. Before embarking on filling out the required forms, check first – consult with a tree arborist to help you confirm whether or not tree removal is the best or only solution.