How to Tell if Your Tree Died

December 27, 2019 1:07 am Published by Leave your thoughts

It can be easy to misdiagnose a tree that has not been fertile or productive as a dead tree. After all, many of the symptoms of a sick tree and one that is actually dying are very similar, making it difficult for homeowners to know the true status of their tree. Fortunately, the guide below will provide you with a few tips to help you better identify the symptoms of dying trees in Newton, MA.

Check the branches

The very first step in checking the status of your tree is to closely inspect its exterior. Even if you aren’t checking to see if your tree is still alive, regular visual inspections of the trees on your property should be conducted so that you are able to notice when anything is out of the ordinary right away. If the branches are healthy and producing new leaves and buds, your tree is very likely still alive. If the branches aren’t producing any new buds, however, a closer look will be needed to determine whether the tree is dead or alive.

To check on the tree’s health, gather a few of the smaller branches, and bend them to see if they have any give. If they break right away without any arching, the branches are dead. If all of the branches you test prove to be dead, it is a very strong sign that the entire tree is dying.

The bark scratch test

If there are several dying branches on your tree, you will next want to get a look at the condition of the bark by removing a small section from the tree’s trunk to perform the scratch test. With your fingernail or a small pocketknife, carefully remove a small strip of the outermost layer. Lying just beneath this layer you will find what is known as the cambium layer. If the tissue of the cambium layer is green, your tree is still alive. If, however, you pull back the top layer and see that the cambium layer is brown and dry, it is a sign of a dying tree.

While you are inspecting the bark itself, you should also check on the overall condition of the trunk, looking for any bark that may be missing in spots on the tree, or any large areas of dying bark.

If upon inspection you find that both the branches and bark on your tree are dying, your first step will be to call on the help of professionals right away. Even though your tree may very well be exhibiting signs of a dying tree, it is always best to consult with specialists that have in-depth knowledge and familiarity with various trees of all types for a comprehensive diagnosis.

No matter what type of tree services you need, whether you need to determine if a tree is truly dying or you require the removal of already-dead trees in Newton, MA, you can rely on our 20 years of experience here at BBD Tree Service. Give us a call today to schedule your consultation, and let us help determine the best course of action for the future of your trees.

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