Friday, January 23, 2015

Prepping for a Hurricane

Hurricanes are nothing to joke about, especially in Florida where many of the cities and towns are located on the coastline. While there isn’t anything we can do to prevent hurricanes, we can help you to prepare your trees for the stormy and windy weather that lies ahead. Hurricane season is from June 1- November 30, so half of the year is spent with the threat of hurricanes. We don’t want to worry you, but we do want to make sure both you and your trees are prepared. Below are the main steps we complete when prepping your trees for hurricane season.

Cleaning the Crown, or Hazard Pruning: Pruning should begin with the removal of all dead, diseased, or broken branches that might easily fall in a hurricane or other strong storm. Additionally, removal of dead wood allows trees to allocate their resources to healthy limbs, which allows the trees to become more efficient and healthier in the future.

Reduction: This is the method of reducing weight at the end of branches, so that the risk of breakage is minimized. When done properly by a Certified Arborist, only the necessary amount of leaf is removed to lighten the weight at the branch collar and to minimize the “sail” area. If this process is done improperly by an amateur, it could easily lead to “over” pruning, which leads to tree damage and death.

Thinning: This is the removal of tree branches, so the tree isn’t over crowded with branches. When this is done properly there’s better air movement within the crown as well as more light penetration to the ground below. Done improperly, thinning can result in “lion’s tailing” (which basically means over-thinning) the tree and can increase the possibility of branch failure. A Certified Arborist is trained in the proper method of thinning your tree so as not to cause these problems.

Gulf Coast Tree Care will only give you the truth about your trees! Let one of our Certified Arborists evaluate your trees for hurricane season. Contact us today to schedule an evaluation. We can be reached at (813) 681-8016.

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