How to Deal with Dead Branches and Boughs on a Tree

As a homeowner, the trees in your yard are your pride and joy. They are literally the first thing anyone sees when visiting your home. Have a dead or dying branch hanging down can make your yard look decrepit and spooky. Beyond the aesthetics alone, a dying branch is a ticking time bomb to when it finally falls. Anyone standing under it or anything built beneath it is subject to potentially hundreds of pounds of wood crashing down. It’s vital to isolate and remove any dead or dying limbs on a tree.

Damaged, diseased, or dead branches or boughs should be removed as soon as possible from the tree. Boughs are just the large, main branches of a tree. The method of removing unsightly branches is called pruning. Pruning is a large part of the regular maintenance and upkeep of beautiful trees. The Spruce says that some of the most apparent signs of a dying tree that call for pruning include:

  • When certain branches are leafless while others are green
  • When there is fungus growing along the trunk of the tree
  • When the bark has peeled off to reveal the smooth wood underneath
  • Any dead leaves that are hanging on to bare branches in the winter months

This can help you quickly identify apparent dying trees. A homeowner should be able to prune their own trees if the dying branch is easily accessible, self-contained to one or two branches, and thin enough to cut safely with a pole saw. However, if an entire bough of the tree is dying one might want to call an arborist. The Central Texas tree care experts at Hamlin Tree Care say that regular pruning can make sure no dead branches fall and potentially injure anyone. However, just removing the dying section of a tree may not fully fix the problem. There might be a larger problem brewing beneath the bark. Diseases and pests could be killing the tree from the inside out. Which could mean the problem might spread across your yard affecting all of your trees. As a homeowner your trees are your art, it’s important that they stay healthy and beautiful.

Having a dead branch or bough could be a sign of an unhealthy tree or it could just mean that the tree outgrew part of its reach. Unfortunately, when a tree sheds its past layers and branches, it can be dangerous to people below. Recognizing and promptly removing any dead sections of one’s trees is the most proactive move a homeowner can do. If there are a few isolated dead branches a dedicated homeowner should be able to cut them down easily.

Since dying branches can either be a potential physical hazard or underlying tree health issue, it’s vital to have an arborist inspect each tree. Unless you’re running a haunted house, having an array of dead branches in your yard might not win “the best yard in the neighborhood” award, so it is a good idea to remove dead branches for the health of your trees!

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