Tips for Healthy Trees
Here are some tips that will enable you to carry out a quick health check of your trees. Starting at the base of the tree, your inspection should go as follows:
- Is there any damage around the base of the tree? Look particularly for cavities or holes, and exposed roots that may be damaged. Are any of the roots beginning to lift on one side? Is there any fungus or decay around the base of the tree or the stem? Some species of fungus will only appear in late summer/autumn.
- Are there any wounds or cavities in the main stem? Are there any areas of dead bark or exposed inner wood where the bark has been damaged? Look up at the more major branches of the tree to see if any of the larger branches have any damage.
- Are there any hanging branches in the canopy? Look carefully for any split limbs or dead and decaying branches. Look for decay at any points of previous surgery or limb removal. Do any of the branches cross each other or rub on each other in the wind?
- Are the leaves in good health? Look for branches lacking foliage or with a color that does not match the rest of the tree. Look at the tips of the canopy for branches lacking leaves as this can indicate root problems.
- Is the whole tree balanced in form or is it leaning to one side? Often trees can be
shaped to bring back a symmetrical form.