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One winter evening I was working on the computer when the power went out. The freezing rain that had been forecast must have been the culprit. It was getting late so I went to bed figuring we would have power again by morning. Thunder and lightning woke me a couple times, but then I heard something a little different. An explosive popping sound followed by what seemed to be a shower of sparks. In my minds eye I tried to picture the cause of this sound. There is nothing like a puzzle to keep me awake but I didn’t want to get up and lose the warmth I had built up under the blankets.

Just drifting off again I heard the sound repeated but up the hill behind my house and more distant more crackly sounding but still accompanied by the sparkling shattering sound my ears were now more tuned in to analyze. Suddenly realizing the impact this freezing rain was having I shot out of bed and ran to the window. Large tree limbs were on the ground. Well the power was out for days for many, and the damage to the trees and landscape is still being cleaned up. After a damaging storm you always see a migration of tree company trucks to the area. Many of the local tree care, and landscape businesses have their hands full assisting their customer base. The city workers are also busy as these crews and residents move debris to the street for collection.

The effects of such a storm can be seen in the landscape for years to come. Storms can cause limbs to break and trees to fall. A large damaged tree branch can be extremely heavy and dangerous to remove or trim. Removing large branches from a mature tree safely requires special training and often specialized equipment. Also the way this damage is dealt with impacts on the health of the tree. If you value your trees or fear a tree becoming a hazard, I would suggest you find a certified arborist.

If they say Sure, no problem move on till you find one that knows what is good for the long term health of a tree. There are plenty of crews in your town that can carve up your trees for you but it may take diligence to find a crew trained in the proper pruning of mature trees. Everyone appreciates the hardworking and practical service of the local jobber cleaning up a storms mess, but if you have issues with major branches of a large tree, do generations to come a favor and search out an International Society of Arboriculture certified arborist.

Regardless who is doing the pruning or why, final pruning cuts should be made just outside a growth of Bark Crew cells called the branch collar. The branch collar is a collar of growth made of parent branch trunk tissue where the branch meets the trunk or parent branch and care should be taken to not cut or remove it. This is true for dead, damaged or living branches. Do not remove the actively growing cells of the branch collar.

These cells are the trees way of closing the wound. The branch collar grows a bit out and angled away from the parent, so if you make a flush cut against the trunk, the branch collar has been removed and the wound will not close. Conversely if you cut far away from the trunk the branch collar is not near the cut where they can grow over the wound. Take notice of trees with dieback of the bark on branches and down the trunks. Often you can tell it was from a flush cut or an end cut. Other times it may be a storm damaged branch that wasn’t removed and it died back to the trunk and on down.

If removing a large limb, first its weight should be reduced to prevent tearing the bark when the branch falls. Make a shallow cut from the bottom of the branch a foot or so out from the branches point of attachment. Then finish cut from the top, above or a little further out on the branch. This leaves a lighter and more manageable stub. The stub is then removed while taking care to not remove the branch collar. This technique reduces the possibility of tearing the bark.

Published at: Recent Health Articleshttp://recenthealtharticles.org

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