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Spotting the Red Flags: Signs Of A Sick Tree

Apr 24, 2023

Trees are essential to our ecosystem. They provide us with countless benefits, from producing oxygen, providing food and habitat to wildlife, and enhancing our landscapes. Like all living things, trees are susceptible to diseases that can compromise their health. Early detection of these issues is crucial to keeping your trees in good shape. In this blog, we’ll discuss the signs of a sick tree and how to nurse it back to health.

Signs of a Sick Tree: What to Watch Out For

Discoloured and wilting leaves

One of the most obvious signs of a sick tree is if the leaves lose their vibrant green colour. If they turn yellow or brown or are wilting, the tree may be suffering from a disease or nutrient deficiency caused by a lack of water, sunlight or pests draining essential nutrients from the leaves.

Cracks, holes, or wounds on the trunk

The trunk is the tree’s supporting structure, and any damage can severely impact the tree’s health. While superficial cracks are harmless, those that split and go deeper than the bark should be concerning. Deep holes and massive wounds on the trunk can indicate that that tree is sick, structurally compromised and potentially at risk of falling.

Sparse foliage

A healthy tree typically has dense foliage coverage throughout its canopy, especially in Spring and Summer. In deciduous trees, significant gaps between branches, excessive leaf loss during non-fall seasons, or dead leaves clinging to bare branches may indicate stress or poor health.

Dead branches or limbs

Too many branches that are brittle, cracking and without leaves may indicate that the tree is sick. They are unsightly and can pose a safety hazard as they become more likely to fall over time.

Fungal growth

Mushroom-like growths on the tree’s trunk or branches may be a sign of decay, and fungi thrive on decaying trees. Fungal growth is a serious problem as it can cause the tree to weaken, attract pests, and even spread disease to surrounding trees.

Stunted growth or Leaning tree

If your tree is not growing as it should or leaning to one side, it may be a sign of a root problem. Weak or damaged roots can cause the tree to lean or stop growing. Root problems can be difficult to detect, but a professional arborist can use specialised tools to diagnose the issue and develop a treatment plan.

Changes in the Soil Around the Tree

Soil conditions can reveal a lot about a tree’s health. Dry or cracked soil means the tree needs water, while waterlogged soil may affect the tree’s stability, causing it lean. Disturbing the soil due to excavation may harm the roots, so before undertaking such tasks, seek professional advice.

What to Do If You Notice Signs of a Sick Tree

When you notice signs of a sick tree, it is crucial to take action immediately to prevent further damage. Inspect the tree thoroughly to determine the extent of the problem. If you suspect the tree may be suffering from a disease or is experiencing poor health, contact a professional arborist who can evaluate the situation and offer appropriate treatment or tree services, such as tree pruning, trimming, removal or replanting.

Sick trees can be expensive and pose a safety risk, but you can help prevent trees from getting sick by following the proper tree maintenance practices, such as regular watering, fertilising and adding mulch to your garden bed. All of these are simple tasks that will help promote the tree’s health.

Signs of a Sick Tree: Early Detection is Key!

Trees are a valuable addition to any property and require proper care to thrive. If you notice signs of a sick tree, engage a professional tree services provider. Arborists can assess the situation and advise on the best course of action to restore your tree’s health. Remember, early detection and treatment are key to restoring a tree back to full health.

Think you have a tree showing signs of sickness? Reach out to us today – we can help assess and advise the best way course of action.

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