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5 Signs Your Tree May Need to Be Removed

A Chainsaw
Trees are gorgeous components of any landscape, but like any life form, they do not live forever. Often, you are better off having a tree removed before it dies since dead and badly damaged trees can drop limbs and fall on people and structures. How do you know when to remove a tree? Here are five signs that the time is right to call your local tree service for a removal appointment.

1. It Will Soon Grow Too Large for the Space

When planting a tree, you need to carefully select a variety of trees that are sized to your space. For example, you do not want to plant a large oak tree in a small garden bed between a garage and a fence.

Spend some time identifying any younger trees on your land. Then, look up the expected width of these trees will be at maturity. If you expect the tree to grow too large for the space it is in, have it removed before it starts crowding your structures or causing problems.

2. It's Growing Into Your Structure

Perhaps a tree is already growing into a fence, hanging over your garage, or sending roots under your concrete patio. Sometimes, just removing a branch or two will temporarily solve your problem. Usually, the best long-term approach is to remove the tree. When a tree is too close to a structure, eventually the roots start growing into and causing serious damage to that structure, and removing the entire tree early on is the only true solution. 

3. It Has Extensive Storm Damage, Such as a Split Trunk

Not all storm damage is serious enough to warrant removal of the tree. If a few limbs fall off or become damaged, your tree care professional might recommend a wait-and-see approach in hope that the tree will recover. However, if a tree leans, has a split trunk, loses its crown, or only has a few healthy branches left, you often have no hope of saving it.

4. It Has Brackets Growing From the Roots or Butt

The large mushroom-like structures that sometimes grow out of trees are known as brackets. They appear when a tree has a fungal infection and the infection has moved into the heartwood.

A tree with brackets emerging from its trunk, butt, or roots does not have much longer to live since the fungi will soon interfere with its ability to transport water up to the branches. Because the fungi weaken the tree and make it more likely to fall during a storm or high winds, you should have a tree with brackets removed promptly, especially if it is anywhere near your house or garage.

5. Its Branches Are Dying

If your tree has one or a few dead branches, keep an eye on it to ensure no more branches die. If the problem seems to spread through the tree, there may be a serious issue at hand.

Many tree diseases, such as oak wilt and Dutch elm disease, cause rapid defoliation. You might have a chance your tree is just stricken with drought or a minor disease like anthracnose, but have a tree care expert look to be sure. If a more serious disease is to blame, removing the tree is essential to prevent the disease from spreading.

Do not wait for a tree to fall or die on its own. If you are worried about one of your trees and think you should remove it, contact Imperial Tree. We offer tree services throughout the San Jose area and are happy to provide you with a free estimate.