Trees are our friends, providing cool shade and beauty to our surroundings. Here in Little Rock, mature trees are especially welcome – tree shaded homes stay much cooler in our scorching summer temperatures and cost less to cool. In addition to helping you keep your cool and making your surroundings more attractive, trees help clean the air and provide homes and food for wildlife.

But just like all living things, sometimes your trees have health or other problems and can use your help. Here are the top five most common problems you might have with your trees:

 

Unwanted Growth/Overgrowth

Sometimes a tree develops a branch in a bad location where it’s growing up against a roof or into power lines. Mature trees can sometimes develop crossing limb patterns, where limbs are weakened by constantly knocking or rubbing against one another. Crossing limbs are very likely to come down in ice storms when the limb crossing over the lower limb is weighted down, adding its weight to the lower limb, which is also covered in ice, and causing it to break.

Sometimes, trees just outgrow their space. A young tree growing a few feet away from a house might have been fine at the time the house was built, but 30 years later and fully grown, it’s too close and could damage the house.

 

Dead or Sagging Branches

Dead tree branches and branches that sag under their own weight are like crossing branches – destined to come down in the next big ice, snow, or wind storm, potentially damaging property and endangering people.

 

Pest Insects

There are a variety of insect pests that like to nibble on tree leaves, bore into tree trunks, or eat bark or roots. While insect damage can be unattractive, in most cases, it doesn’t endanger the health of the tree. There are some pests, however, that can kill trees.

 

Diseases

Numerous viral, bacterial, and fungal diseases can infect trees. Many are specific to a certain species of tree, such as Dutch elm disease, and sometimes certain varieties or subspecies are more susceptible than others. Many of the diseases that infect trees may affect the tree’s appearance for a season but cause no lasting harm. Others, like Dutch elm disease, are fatal.

Physical Damage

Trees often suffer damage from a number of weather-related causes, as well as man-made causes. High winds or ice can bring down healthy limbs as well as dead or weak branches. Heavy rain for an extended period can cause otherwise healthy trees to uproot and fall over, and a tornado can shear off the top of a tree or pluck it from the ground in one piece.

In addition, trees can be damaged by a number of human activities – soil compaction or construction can damage roots, lawn equipment can create wounds in tree trunks, and incorrect tree trimming can cause unhealthy growth patterns.

How to Solve Your Tree Problems

All of the most common tree problems can be addressed by a certified arborist. Certified arborists provide a full range of tree services, including diagnosing and treating tree diseases and insect infestations, tree trimming and pruning, and tree removal. A professional arborist is trained in the proper tree trimming techniques to promote your tree’s health while removing unwanted growth and can safely remove branches – or the entire tree – without damaging property.

A tree service with a certified arborist should be on your list of regular maintenance companies, along with your plumber, heating and cooling service, and lawn service. Tree service every few years removes problem branches before they can come down in a storm and hurt anyone or damage property, and it’s good to know you’ve got a professional you can call on if any of your trees start looking sick.

If it’s time for your trees to have a check-up, contact Capital City Tree Service at 501-686-2097 for the full range of tree services in Little Rock and North Little Rock. Our certified arborist will help you keep family, guests, and property safe, and your trees in good health.