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Every homeowner should have a decent understanding of the plants within their landscape in order to ensure it remains healthy and appealing. This includes having knowledge in identifying rot or decay for each variety of plant you have, especially your trees. Rotted or decaying trees can in fact become hazards for you, your family, or your home if left unaddressed, so being able to discern whether or not a tree has become rotten or diseased is incredibly important. 

Moreover, when you do identify a decayed tree, it is safest to hire a top-quality tree removal company, like Timber Works Tree Care, that will send an expert to efficiently eliminate the decayed sections or the entire tree from your yard. With over 13 years of experience in tree care, we know how to recognize diseased trees and safely clear them from any landscape with precision. Here’s how you can spot decay in your trees’ roots or trunk: 

Rot in the Roots

At the roots, there will most likely be rotting that occurs, rather than decay. This is because rot develops from the persistent presence of moisture in the soil around the tree’s roots, usually caused by being poorly drained or having its soil overwatered. 

This makes the soil less porous and reduces the amount of oxygen flowing to the roots, thus causing them to rot. 

Another cause of root rot are spores produced by fungus within the soil, which will more likely infect your tree’s roots when the soil surrounding them is covered in moisture.

As the roots lie below the surface and are often unseen, it’s difficult to identify whether or not they are suffering from rot. However, here are some clear symptoms of rot you can find in other parts of the tree:

  • A sudden decay in your tree’s appearance
  • Wilted, yellow or brownish leaves
  • Branch dieback
  • Small, pale leaves vs. large, dark full-grown leaves
  • Thinning canopy 

Decay in the Trunk

Besides seeking symptoms of rot in the roots of your tree, you should take a look at the trunk of your trees as well. There you can find several more signs of rot and decay, which are often due to fungi and other microbes. 

One initial sign of potential decay is that there are wounds on the trunk, or rather areas left bare of bark and the trunk’s outer layer. Such wounds are susceptible to infestation, thus causing decay. 

These wounds are often caused by severe storm weather, birds, insects, and other similar causes. 

If there has been an infestation, here are some signs of decay that you’ll likely see:

  • Cavities within the trunk
  • Extensive amount of deadwood
  • A lack of bark or loose pieces falling off
  • Fungal conks (outgrowth of fungus growing on trunk)
  • Weakened branches
  • Trunk wounds are poorly closed

Timber Works Tree Care: Tree Removal Company in Northern Virginia 

The above information can help you find and deal with potential tree infestations in your landscape as soon as possible. However, if infestation or rot has spoiled one or more of your trees, consider hiring a professional tree removal company like Timber Works Tree Care. We have worked on numerous landscapes throughout Northern Virginia, providing land clearing, tree removal, stump grinding, and many more tree care services. Over our many years of service, our trained experts are able to perform each of our services quickly, efficiently, and most importantly, safely for hundreds of residents. 

Contact us at (540) 692-9606 to learn more about our tree care services and schedule an appointment with one of our specialists today.

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