Tree removal and tree trimming is our business. It’s how our family has supported itself for three generations. We look at our occupation as a responsibility. Just as doctors are to “do no harm” we feel an obligation to protect trees whenever possible.
Tree removal is a hard decision
For us, and many of our customers, the decision to remove a tree is not easy and happens for a variety of reasons – home and yard additions, poor planting, safety, declining health, storm damage, and tree death to name a few. A lot of those reasons are very obvious to homeowners, but there are other, less obvious, reasons why trees have to be removed such as crowding, cracks, structural and foundational issues, disease, insect infestations, and interior decay.
These are the things we look for when we come out to give a homeowner an estimate. While the initial plan may be to trim the tree, a closer inspection may show that the tree needs to be removed for one reason or another.
Wood decay and rot caused by fungus
Recently, we took down a maple tree in St. Ann. Many folks driving past this tree every day probably were a bit confused as to why the homeowner decided to take it down – a perfect example of you can’t judge a book by its cover. What you can’t always see just driving or even walking past the area is that this tree was going to fall – it was just a matter of time. This beautiful maple tree was rotting from the bottom up.
Wood decay and rot of this kind are generally caused by a fungus that digests moist wood and causes it to rot. The moist wood may be caused by some sort of damage to the bark that allows moisture to enter. There are a variety of species of tree fungus, some of which attack dead wood and some of which colonize in living trees.
Common tree diseases and pests
This article from the Missouri Department of Conservation offers some great examples – Diseases and Pests – What’s Killing My Trees.
While trees have the ability to set up barriers to protect the rest of the organism from the fungus, the portion that has been attacked is weakened and hollow, leaving it susceptible to breakage and creating a safety issue for anyone around it or home in its path. In these situations, we have to make a decision to remove the limb or tree before it can do any damage to a person or property.