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Tree Structure Evaluation

Tree Structure Evaluation

When branches or trees fall, there is a risk of both personal injury and property damage. Evaluating trees for structural defects can effectively help mitigate that risk, resulting in a safer property.

Structural defects are issues that predispose a tree to failure, even under normal weather conditions. Wood decay, broken or hanging branches, cracks and splits, poor architecture, and root related defects can all be identified when an arborist conducts a tree structure evaluation. While some of these problems are readily visible, others may require a more detailed assessment. Technology that measures wood density and quality can be used to evaluate the severity of defects. Bartlett Tree Experts utilizes a sonic instrument capable of developing three-dimensional pictures to quantify the extent and severity of decay and defects in branches and stems.

Any tree, regardless of age, can have structural issues. However, larger and older trees have had more opportunity to develop decay or other injuries that affect stability. Their prominence in the landscape also makes them more susceptible to wind exposure and weather extremes. With this in mind, it is particularly important to evaluate the structural integrity of older trees on commercial properties and undertake treatments that reduce the risk of failure.

Pruning can remove dead wood and weakly attached branches that present a hazard. It can also help reduce branch weight and wind resistance. Structural support systems, including cables, braces, guys, and props, are available to help address a variety of architectural issues. After evaluation, if a tree poses an unreasonable risk to the property manager, removal or restricting access to the area near the tree must be considered.

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