Tree diseases are a constant fact of life, and it is almost impossible for the home gardener not to be affected at some point during his or her lifetime. The good news is that there are professionals who know how to detect these maladies early and take steps to minimize damage as much as possible.
A common misconception about arborists is that they only care for established trees; this is far from the truth. In fact, arborists are a great source of knowledge about how to prevent pest and disease infestations before they can cause a problem.
An arborist is a professional who specializes in caring for trees. They promote healthy growth by providing medicine, preventive measures, and proper pruning techniques. Certified arborists are educated in soil science, the growth and structure of trees (from the cellular level to forest ecosystems), and the identification of pests, diseases, and other threats.
Arborists also treat mature trees by pruning them in such a way as to promote good texture and form. When diseases are present, they know how to deal with them in a way that won’t cause too much damage. This saves the tree owner money by avoiding the needless use of chemicals.
Common Tree Diseases
Here is just a shortlist of some common diseases that an arborist can detect and help address:
Necrotic Ring Spot
This is a fungal disease that causes gold or brown rings to develop around the trunk and branches of susceptible trees. These rings can expand rapidly, eventually killing off a limb. It is most prominent in live oak trees (Quercus virginiana).
The arborist will examine the tree for signs of this disease, then cut a sample from the trunk or branch to determine the extent and severity of the infection. If necessary, they can take steps to harvest infected wood while protecting the overall health of the tree.
The arborist will skillfully prune out the deadwood in such a way that it won’t be missed as it rots away over time.
This fungal disease causes leaves to turn brown and wilted, then fall off prematurely. Eventually, the tree will lose all or most of its leaves to the disease. It affects nearly 300 species of trees and shrubs, but it is lethal only to woody plants.
In some cases, the arborist can apply fungicides to infected limbs and trunks. However, it’s important that they first determine whether the tree in question is resistant or susceptible to this disease; otherwise, further damage could be done.
It is also important to note that fungicides can only treat the symptoms of this disease; they are ineffective in eradicating it. For these reasons, affected trees will need surgery at some point, during which sections of infected wood and bark will be removed. The arborist will take care to leave healthy skin behind as a bandage until the tree can heal on its own.
Why Hire a Certified Arborist?
Certified arborists know how to protect trees from pests and diseases. They also know what steps are necessary to prevent further damage to trees once they have been diagnosed with an ailment. The first line of defense is usually prevention; then, if problems do arise, a certified arborist can take action before irreparable harm is done.
Be sure to hire a certified arborist whenever you suspect that your tree might have a problem. You can check to see whether or not the company is accredited by the International Society of Arboriculture. This way, you will know that your arborist has been properly trained and is qualified to protect your tree.
The best way to protect a tree is before it’s too late. In today’s tough economy, trees are often left neglected and unkempt. It all seems innocent enough; after all, how much damage can one little branch do? The problem is that these seemingly small issues can eventually compound into larger problems that are much harder and more costly to fix. Arborists can detect the earliest signs of disease so they can be treated before too much damage is done.
Talk to Us
It’s important for home or commercial property owners to keep up with tree care because it’s an investment. If you need to have a diseased or unwanted plant removed, contact Baxter’s Tree Service. Our staff is highly trained and we have the latest tools for the job. We offer free estimates and same-day service seven days per week!