How to identify a tree that needs to be removed

Trees provide enormous benefits to your property and the decision to remove a tree altogether should never be taken lightly. But there are times when it’s better to fell a tree rather than risk damage to people or property.


Here are three signs to look out for:


  1. Leaning

You’ll need to find a spot where you can see the whole tree. If the tree is leaning, it may be because it is dead or dying.


  1. Damaged and decaying roots

If the roots are visible and showing signs of damage or decay, this could pose a serious threat. It’s a sign that the tree has lost its structural support; making it unstable.


  1. Cracks and cavities in the trunk

Cracks and cavities may indicate that the tree is no longer structurally sound. You should also check for missing bark. This is often a sign that the tree is infested, sick, rotten or dying.


Construction damage

Whenever you undertake any kind of construction on your property, you put your trees at risk. Digging may cause damage to roots, ultimately affecting the tree’s source of nutrients, and scraping tree bark opens up a spot where disease or infestation can take hold.


So before you lay a new driveway or add an extra room onto your house place, a barricade around the trunk of the tree; at least a few metres wide to protect the roots and the trunk. If your tree is accidentally damaged while work is being carried out, take these steps to limit the damage:


  • Prune damaged limbs and reduce the overall weight of the tree
  • Add cables or bracing rods to maintain the structural integrity of the tree
  • Water the tree well by slowly soaking the roots
  • Gently aerate any compacted soil around the root zone


Proper tree care throughout the year will ensure that you do not have to make the decision to remove a tree too often. If in doubt, call in a certified arborist to examine your trees and provide you with a professional assessment of their health and stability.