tree is sick

How to Tell If Your Tree is Sick

How to tell if you tree is becoming ill

There are many ways to tell if your tree is sick.  While we may not realize it, trees serve us in more ways than we imagine. They grace our landscapes with beauty, provide shade to play or rest under, and can add real estate value to a home. However, just like with most living things, trees need the proper care and attention to thrive. Leave them unattended for too long, and their suffering from natural causes can lead them to rot, decay, and death. Here are several signs to look out for to determine if your tree is sick.

The Leaning Tree

Depending on the type of tree, tree branches can take many shapes. Some branches loop and swirl up, while others naturally droop and trickle down. Either of these things is probably not a major sign that your tree is sick. A leaning tree that IS sick will show its symptoms at its base and roots. If your whole tree trunk is leaning to the side and you can see some roots exposed, then action needs to be taken quickly. This, along with small branches sprouting from the base of the tree, indicates that your tree may be suffering from severe decay. Spotting it and addressing sooner than later can help save your tree from an early demise.

Wilting Leaves

Just like us, trees suffer stress from their surroundings. Often, this stress in trees goes unnoticed since most people don’t know how to spot signs of stress in a tree. If your tree shows cracks in its trunk or major limbs, has mushroom or fungus on it, and doesn’t sprout new leaves in abundance, then you can be sure it is under stress.

To give your tree the best chance at growing, plant it away from regular human activity. This includes farther away from foot traffic and lawn tools. A growing tree with constant foot traffic can compact the soil around it, which can suffocate the roots. This results in slower growth and wilting leaves. Yard tools that regularly work around the tree may damage the roots and base, which affects the rest of the tree. There is a reason why trees that grow out in the forest outlive the ones in cities by far, and that’s because they are less stressed than their urban counterparts.

Nesting Pests

Trees that provide shade and shelter for humans also end up providing shade, shelter, and food for bugs and other pests. The good thing about these symptoms is that pest-related tree illnesses are far easier to spot than other internal symptoms. If a pine beetle has been munching at your tree, you can tell because of the burrow trail it leaves along the trunk. If aphids or other bugs have been munching on the leaves, you can tell because of the small little holes and patterns that they leave when they feast on the foliage.

While many of these signs might not spell the immediate doom of your tree, letting them pile up on one another can cause serious damage down the line. Nesting spiders, pine beetle burrow trails, and weakened leaves all leave your tree more exposed and vulnerable to other pests and natural diseases.

Just as trees help you, they need help as well. Knowing what to look out for to tell if they are sick can help them. It will help them live a much longer life than if nothing was done. If you are having tree problems or don’t have the time to spot and treat them, give us a call!  We specialize in tree care and do so with passion and care.