8 Signs You Have a Dead Tree in Your Yard

8 Signs You Have a Dead Tree in Your Yard

There are about 228 billion trees standing tall across the US. It’s only natural that some people will have them in their yards. It’s an awesome way to bring shade to your home and raise your curb appeal.

But sometimes, you’re going to need to contend with a dead tree on your property. Read on to learn some signs that you have a potentially dangerous rotten tree at home.

1. There Are Dead Branches

Dead branches are one of the first signs of a dying tree. They usually mean that your tree is struggling with a disease or pests. In many cases, it just means that the tree is about to begin decaying even more.

A dead branch is liable to fall off the tree, which is especially bad if it’s above your house or cars. If it’s above a sidewalk or outdoor seating area, it can also be potentially dangerous.

You can tell when a branch is dead if it snaps easily, has peeling bark, and never grows any foliage when it’s warm outside.

2. The Tree Is Decaying

Branches aren’t the only part of a tree that will start showing decay after the tree dies. The tree turn can also show damage in the form of abnormally peeling bark, vertical cracks, and broken wood.

Sometimes, this will happen naturally because of diseases. Other times, it happens after a natural disaster. A windstorm or lightning strike can kill a tree fast, so it’s important to be on the lookout for signs of decay after a serious storm.

If you’ve recently noticed issues on your tree trunk, it’s important to get an evaluation of your trees. Experts will identify potential issues, recommend next steps, and come up with preventative care plans for still-living trees. You’ll move towards getting rid of decaying or rotten ones so you can plant new buds.

3. You Have a Hollow Dead Tree

Yes, hollow trees are interesting and photogenic. But they also are signs that your tree has low structural integrity. The internal decay and risks that it presents aren’t worth the risk, even for a really cool photo op.

Usually, you’ll notice that a tree is hollowed out because an animal starts living inside it. If you see a squirrel head poking out of your tree trunk, it’s probably hollowed out.

But if you suspect that you have a hollow tree and see no signs, you can also tap it with a rubber mallet. If it makes a hollow thud sound, you probably need to call in an expert.

4. The Tree Isn’t Standing Straight

Your tree’s foundational integrity is also probably compromised if it’s falling at an angle. It’s important to note that some trees were grown at angles on purpose for various reasons. You’ll know if this is the case by your house if the tree always has looked tilted.

In the vast majority of cases, trees are meant to stand straight and tall. If it’s leaning over (and never has been before), the roots are probably damaged. Dead roots mean a dying tree since it’ll no longer be able to absorb water and soil nutrients.

5. Shedding Bark and Sticks

When a tree hollows out or starts leaning, you’ll also usually start to see a lot of bark and sticks on the ground surrounding the tree. Sometimes, you’ll notice these issues even if the tree doesn’t have any other visible problems. Shedding is a surefire sign that something isn’t right with a tree.

Usually, falling sticks and bark are an alert that there’s an underlying disease in the tree. Usually, this stems from an infection or abnormal fungal growth. Calling a Dallas tree service can help you figure out the issue and come up with a plan for saving or removing the tree.

6. The Bark Has No Green

Healthy tree bark will have some green underneath the top layer. This is because they have a regular nutrient flow from the soil.

If there’s tree root damage or something else killing it, it will stop absorbing these nutrients. This means that there won’t be a green layer underneath the bark.

If you suspect that your tree is dying, scratch the surface of the bark. You should see some green when the top layer peels away. If you don’t, it’s probably dead and requires tree removal.

7. You See Fungus Growing

Little mushrooms and cool fungi on the base of your tree look cool and are interesting to photograph. Unfortunately, they’re also signs of serious issues that you need to immediately look into. It’s often possible to save the tree if you call in experts the second you notice the problem, though not always.

Rotting bark is also a sign of a fungal infection. Basically, if you notice a weird growth or oddly textured bark, you probably are struggling with decay.

Deal with it right away. If you don’t, the fungus may spread to surrounding trees. It’s contagious, and getting rid of it will protect the other trees and foliage on your property.

8. Pests on the Tree

Trees are the target of lots of outdoor pests. Wood-boring termites and beetles can take your tree down in weeks. In Dallas, you might also have to contend with barklice, soapberry borers, and webworms.

If you start to notice these pests, call someone to assess the situation ASAP. The problem will get worse as bugs bore deeper into your tree because that requires them to consume more of the wood. It hollows out your tree and damages its structural integrity, killing it slowly.

Get Started

Now that you know some signs of a dead tree in your yard, it’s time to get started. Green Pine is committed to helping you remove a dying tree from your yard to keep you and your property safe.

Our team will also grind the stumps to maintain your curb appeal and property value. Contact us with any remaining questions and get an arborist evaluation today.

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