A vibrant, healthy tree can help give a home a lot of its curb appeal. Aside from lush leaves in spring and summer, and beautiful looking leaves when the colors begin to turn in the fall, a tree can help provide shade and just help complement the overall look of a home or business. Unfortunately, whether it's due to disease, invasive species or some other circumstance, trees can perish. And while a healthy tree can help with a home's curb appeal, a dying one can accomplish the opposite. With that said, if you think your tree might be on the fritz, there are a couple of tell-tale ways to help you understand whether it's dying:
Is My Tree Dying?
- The Scratch Test: This is a test best performed on large trees. All you need to do is scratch a piece of the bark off the base. If it's green underneath the bark, then your tree is likely just fine. But if the color is any other color than green, then the tree is likely either already dead or on its way to dying.
- The Twig Test: This is similar to the scratch test that we've detailed above, except it involves a twig and not the trunk. Simply snap a twig off of the tree that's within reach and then break it apart. Is it green inside? That's good. Or black? That's bad. Did the branch break off easily? Then it was likely dead to begin with. Or did you have to work to break it off?
In addition to the two tests we mentioned above, there are a few other signs to be on the lookout for. For instance, walk around the tree and check for soft spots, moss, cracks or rot. If you determine that a tree has died, it's best to remove it, both to protect your property and the property of your neighbors.