The Common Signs of a Dying or Dead Tree?

For most of us homeowners it can be difficult to see if one of our trees is dying before it is too late and there is usually a chance that a tree can be saved with some maintenance and preventative measures if you are able to spot an unhealthy tree in advance.

The reason it is difficult to see if your tree is dying is that trees die gradually, usually over the course of several years if the causes are natural. A dead tree on your property affects the overall look of your yard and landscape and the the problem goes deeper than just aesthetics as the dead tree is actually a hazard to people and property if the tree was to fall down on someone or something. If identified early, some symptoms can be corrected. Here are the most common red flags you should be on the look out for to determine if your tree is dying.

  • Unusual shedding of leaves
  • Branches falling off
  • An infestation of ants and other insects
  • Bark falling off
  • Leaning/bending trees
  • Discolored leaves
  • Fungi infestation

If you notice any of these signs that your tree may be unhealthy or dying then it is important to contact a qualified arborist right away. We have experience in recognizing the early warning signs of an unhealthy tree and we can usually perform some tree maintenance to save your tree. If the worst case happens and your tree is too far gone then we can help you establish a tree removal plan to keep your yard safe and looking great. We have experience in the safe removal of trees and trimming of trees to keep you and your family free from the hazards that a dying tree present.

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Tree Safety on Ottawa Construction Zones and Building Sites

Construction sites and building zones involve a lot of moving pieces and factors such as time, plans, physical labour and often different contractors. When planning construction many things are taken into consideration such as soil concentrations etc. however one thing that doesn’t always received the same thought in the beginning is trees. This may come as a surprise but trees of all ages require some considerations and precautions which will increase the trees chance of survival after construction comes to an end.

Even if a construction site seems to have zero or minimal impact on the trees growing on the property, it can take years for mature trees to show signs and symptoms from damages caused by construction. In some cases it can even take a decade for a tree to die from post-construction injuries. If you are planning to do some construction, whether it’s a residential project that is quite small or it is a full blown commercial build, we encourage you to contact a professional arborist to take a look at the trees on the property and provide some recommendations on the most effective way to care for the trees and prevent construction related damage. There are also some considerations and post-construction care regimens that can help maintain healthy trees.

There is an area around every tree that is known as the critical root zone (CRZ) and it is extremely important that this zone is protected and considerations are made to ensure the tree is not damaged in the CRZ.

Some construction and building tasks that can negatively impact the health and lifespan of a tree include:

  • Debris being dumped or placed on top of the root system, against a tree trunk or something that seeps into the ground.
  • Vehicles driving over the critical root zone.
  • Harmful and dangerous materials being mixed over the roots or critical root zone (ie. paint or mortar).
  • Roots of the tree being cut and soil compacted by heavy traffic.

With the right precautions and post-construction care, you can help prevent the premature death of your trees that make up such a beautiful landscape for your property. Before you begin your construction project, give us a call to discuss construction site safety with regards to your trees and the critical root zone. We are here to help and if you have some dead or dying trees we can help with the tree removal as well to ensure that only the dead trees are removed and the remaining healthy trees stay healthy.

Spring Tree Care Checklist from Tree Pruning to Planting

Winter is on its way out as spring kicks off to spark the change in seasons. This is the time of year to start focusing on spring tree care for your home. Your main task right now is to prepare your trees for new growth as the snow and ice melt away. Additionally, if you want to plant new trees then now is the time to start planning for them. Follow this checklist for things that need to be done in spring.

Spring Tree Inspections and Tree Pruning

This time of year is the perfect time to get your trees inspected. It is easier for arborists to identify disease and any winter damage that may be impacting your tree growth. Spring is also the perfect time for tree pruning which will help encourage spring growth. This is the process of trimming dead and damaged branches as well as cutting off any unsafe branches to prevent injury. The best time for tree pruning is early spring because if you have your trees pruned after spring then your tress can be attacked by various diseases and insects/pests. When tree pruning is done properly, you will have a huge positive impact on the overall health of your trees and their accelerated growth.

Garden Cleanup and Tree Fertilization

Once the snow and ice melt away, you will want to take this opportunity to clean your yard and remove branches, leaves and other types of waste that have been accumulating in your yard. This can allow sunlight to not just reach but also penetrate beneath the soil surface which can help with the development of tree roots, resulting in the most optimal spring tree growth. After the winter months, your soil is likely lacking the proper nutrients for your tree. Consequently, you should take advantage of the spring time and start your tree fertilization program so that the nutrients can be replenished in your soil which will help with the overall health of your tree and make your tree less vulnerable to pests and disease.

Mulching and New Tree Planting

Another way to improve the soil quality around your trees is to mulch. Tree mulching helps to keep your soil fertilized and moist which will also stop weeds from growing (added bonus) and mulching is very important for young or newly planted trees that you may have added this spring. Two to four inches is sufficient around your trees.

There are many reasons people plant trees from pure aesthetics to the production of oxygen. Plants in your yard will also provide much needed shade during the summer months and offer a place to hide for your family and pets. Additionally, the newly planted trees will help increase the value of your home in time as people seek properties with a lot of tree coverage. While trees can be very beneficial, they must be planted in the right way and the first step is choosing the right place to plant them. This is where we can step in with our tree planting services to offer the best recommendations and tree planting for successful tree growth.

Crowe Tree Service offers a full range of spring tree care services in Ottawa and our professional arborists are always happy to help you with all of your tree care needs from tree removal, tree pruning, tree care and hedge trimming. Contact us today to get free consultation on your tree care services this spring and get a jump start on the season.


Spring Tree Maintenance and Pruning Ottawa

Spring is on it’s way and this is a great time of year to start thinking about your trees, hedges and tree maintenance. This time of year is great to look at our trees to identify any care you may need to start applying to your young trees in the spring.

One of the first things you will want to take a look at is whether or not you need more mulch. Check around your young trees and determine the level of mulch that has survived through the winter months. It’s best to dig around the existing mulch checking for any weeds or other issues before putting another 2-3 inches of mulch on top that would just mask the deeper problem. Once you have checked the surrounding mulch and determined that everything looks good and you need more mulch then you are good to go with puttting another 2-3 inches on top.

The next thing you will want to do is check the water level of your trees with a screw driver to see if the screw driver comes out wet or moist when put into the ground. Your trees have been pushing roots all winter and are likely thirsty so it’s a great time to give them a proper drink. After nourishing your parched trees and replenishing the mulch it is time to start looking at pruning the trees to foster optimal growth and to trim the dead ends.

For the best spring tree maintenance, give us a call and one of our trained arborists in Ottawa will help you with your spring tree maintenance. Your trees will be healthier for it and your yard will look fantastic.

Dead Tree Removal Ottawa – When is it Time to Say Goodbye?

Trees can really add to a landscape and beautify your yard, so when they are dying it can be hard to part with them. Even if your tree seems healthy and in good shape, the health of your tree could be much worse than what you see with the untrained eye and can be a disaster waiting to happen if something isn’t done right away.

Usually removal of a tree would be a last resort if there are no other options such as safe tree management like pruning and disease mitigation however there are times where tree removal is the best course of action a home owner can take. Tree removal in Ottawa can be tricky business and quite dangerous so it is highly recommended to have a professional tree removal expert perform the tree removal. You should not attempt to do a tree removal on your own unless you have a lot of experience with tree removal and tree maintenance. If you do not remove a dead or dying tree then you are risking thousands of dollars in damage as well as personal injury if the tree or parts of the tree fall. With the heavy winds and unusual weather we have been experiencing in Ottawa, it is recommended to have us take a look at your trees if there are some you are concerned about in order to assess the risk and provide you with some recommendations. Often a tree doesn’t look dangerous until after a storm or heavy snow exposes its vulnerabilities and by this time it may be too late if the tree has fallen causing damage to property or persons.

As a home owner, you own the tree and therefore you are responsible for any damages caused by the tree so it is in your best interest to have the tree professionally removed. This is just to keep you informed and not to scare you as the tree removal process is easy and affordable. We just want to make sure you understand the reasons behind having a tree removed and the seriousness of not removing a dead or dying tree.

How Can I Tell if My Tree is Dead or Dying?

There is some good news! You can usually tell if a tree is struggling by studying the branches, trunk, roots and location around your tree. You should be looking for some red flags that would indicate it may be time to remove your dead or dying tree. The following red flags will help you identify issues:

  • There are signs of infection
  • You see large, dead branches in the tree’s crown
  • Your tree isn’t growing well
  • There is evidence of root defects
  • The trunk is compromised
  • The tree is hollow
  • The tree is suddenly leaning
  • You observe sprouts at the base of the tree
  • The tree is under power lines
  • The tree is too close to a house or other structure

If you have noticed any of these red flags then give us a call and one of our professional arborists will come by to inspect your tree to determine a tree maintenance plan or if tree removal is required. If your tree is dead or dying it doesn’t mean it has to be removed in every case. For example, if your tree is located on a large lot in a forest away from people or structures then it will be okay to let nature take its course. Tree removal is usually a last resort because these trees can serve as a home and refuge for woodpeckers and other wildlife in your neighbourhood.

Sometimes tree failures happen and it is sudden and something you cannot plan for – however with dead and dying trees you usually have some time before imminent danger is present so you can prepare for a proper tree removal by a professional. This is not to be ignored though to prevent damage to yourself, your family or your home. A good time to inspect your tree is in between seasons before the worst of summer storms and heavy winter snowfalls happen. Since most tree removal jobs are unsafe for the average home or property owner, it is important for you to give us a call for our professional tree removal services.

Does tree trimming help your tree grow?

There are many reasons why tree pruning and trimming is beneficial and one of the most apparent is that you will increase your property value by beautifying your yard and making your home more attractive. There are benefits for your trees also in terms of their overall health. Having your trees professionally pruned will make them more healthy, productive and of course more pretty to look at. The additional benefit of tree trimming and pruning in Ottawa is that your trees will be safer for your family and the pruning and trimming will actually help them grow better.

Furthermore, if some of your trees are fruit trees then trimming and pruning can help with fruit production from your trees. When you remove dead limbs from your trees, you are promoting better overall health in the tree, since dead wood makes the tree more susceptible to insect infestation and diseases that can harm the tree. The pruning and trimming process encourages the growth of spurs which will become fruit in the following year.

One of the most important reasons outside of the overall growth of your tree is to remove hazardous branches that could fall on someone or something on your property. This is usually a good enough reason to have a professional arborist come in to help with your pruning and tree trimming however the added health benefits for your tree will hopefully push you toward making the phone call to have your tree trimming in Ottawa done this coming season.

You see everything goes hand in hand. Tree trimming helps your tree grow and this ultimately makes your property more beautiful and safe. Dead wood and cracks in the tree, decay, cankers and poor root growth are all able to cause safety issues and can even lead to the death of your tree. Regular tree trimming in Ottawa will help to encourage the health and growth of your tree which will make your tree grow and remain strong – as well as improving the overall aesthetics of your yard.

With all of these benefits it is something you should be adding to your schedule for the coming season by giving us a call at 613-978-TREE (8733) to book an appointment for your annual tree trimming service from one of our tree pruning specialists. Let’s work together to keep your trees looking great, healthy, and most importantly safe for everyone to enjoy.


What To Do When A Tree Falls On Your House

It’s always best to have a tree removed if you believe that your tree is sick or dead and at risk of falling on your home or property. While it is always best to be proactive and hire a tree removal professional in Ottawa, sometimes that opportunity doesn’t present itself and tress fall down on their own without warning or as a result of a big storm. It may sound like something that doesn’t happen often however recent studies show that more people are killed each year from trees falling down than from shark attacks. That’s right, falling trees are more dangerous than sharks… in a sense.

So while we know that tree removal is the best option for safety, if a tree does fall on your property there are some steps you can take to ensure you and your family are safe and to get the cleanup started quickly.

The first thing you should do if a tree falls on your property and you are home is evacuate – immediately. The initial damage can be significant and after the tree falls down the danger isn’t over. When big trees fall on a home they usually fall with incredible force and they can cause structural damage to the home that could lead to a collapse of the building.

After evacuating your home, you will want to look for fallen power lines as this can be a serious life-threatening hazard and any power lines that have fallen down should be reported immediately and avoided at all costs!

The next step would be to call a professional tree removal service in Ottawa to come and assess the situation. A detailed tree removal and debris cleanup quotation will be provided and you can make a game plan with the tree removal company to get started.

It’s very important to understand that fallen trees are very dangerous! Even trees that look like they have fallen and aren’t moving may be under great pressure which makes them extremely dangerous to be around. It’s no joke and it is highly recommended to leave the emergency tree removal and clean up to the tree removal professionals to prevent injury and keep your family safe.

After contacting a tree removal company in Ottawa you will want to contact the insurance company if your property has been damaged and also contact the city or jurisdiction offices to obtain tree removal permits.

Emergency Tree Removal in Ottawa

Having a tree fall on your house would not be a fun experience. The good news is that if you keep these things in mind then in the unfortunate event that you have a tree fall on your home then the process will be much smoother and there will be a lot less to worry about because you will know exactly what to do.

If a tree has fallen on your property and you need emergency tree removal service, please give us a call and one of our tree removal experts will be there to help!

Soil Health Affects the Health of Your Trees

Professional Tree Removal and Cedar Hedge Trimming in Ottawa

Cedar hedges are a relatively simple way of providing privacy to your home compound and yard. These are easy to grow plants that also add a formal lovely look to your landscape. They are evergreen providing an all year color and interest. However, they also require maintenance and pruning to keep them looking neat and sharp.

In Ottawa, there are quite a number of species of cedar trees which can be used for hedges. The most common species of cedar wood in Thuja occidentals which is commonly called American arborvitae, Northern white cedar, Eastern arborvitae or Eastern white cedar.

Choose the Location Well

You must be very cautious while selecting where you place your cedar hedge. These non-dwarf plants can reach heights of about 15 feet for the Thuja occidentals and 60 feet for Sudwelli if not properly maintained and pruned.

Avoid placing the cedar hedge close to a path, like a walkway or a roadway where you will use salt during the winter. This is because of salt damages cedar hedges. The other don’t is you should avoid planting cedar hedges near steep slopes that cause loss of moisture. For the best growth, it is key to plant your cedar hedge receives full sun to part shade.

How to Cultivate Cedar Hedges in Ottawa

These plants prefer to be planted on organically rich soil which helps maintain the moisture. It is important to place the plants 12 to 18 inches apart from each other when planting. Mature cedar hedges need to be fertilized every fall or spring.

For the first year, the cedar hedges do not require pruning as they are only under 3 feet tall. As the hedge matures it will serve you well if you begin pruning in early spring. The shortest plant will act as a guide, trimming off the tops to match it and light trims on the sides.

If the goal was to encourage more height the leader which is the topmost should not be trimmed. It can also be pruned lightly to encourage more height.

Pruning of cedar hedges in Ottawa goes on throughout the summer to prevent the winterkill of freshly pruned branches.

Cedar hedges are quite the best boundary plants as they do not have any serious insect or disease problems and the effect of infestation is usually minimal. Cedar hedges should be pruned during spring or fall and all through the summer to keep them neat giving your yard that formal look.

Winter tree removal Ottawa

In this cold season, the only tree removal you may be thinking about maybe cutting down your next blue spruce or Douglas fir. But most likely there is a diseased or dead tree in your compound. Winter season may be the perfect time to remove it. This is all in order to avoid it coming down on your house or damaging your property letting you suffer the harsh cold weather and winter snow storms.

There are more reasons as to why tree removal during the winter should be taken seriously. Here are but a few of these reasons:

Slow Season

During winter, almost everyone sticks to indoor activities and you will not find people hiking, camping or walking around the wooded area around your house. This makes it the best time to clear those large trees. Also, the safety of your family is ensured as your kids are not running around the yard where tree removal may be ongoing.

No Leaves, No Problem

Thick foliage makes it difficult to see what branches of the tree are dead and decaying or are diseased in need of cutting. However, during the winter season arborists have a clear vision of the trunk at the very top of the tree. After tree removal, the lack of leaves makes it even an easier job cleaning up.

Bring on the Big Equipment

The winter weather hardens the ground making it the optimum conditions to bring in the big guns. The large trucks and machinery used in tree removal are favoured by the cold season and suffer a minimal risk of getting stuck unless the ground is covered with snow. After the tree trunk is cut you will have to wait for the ground to soften in order to remove the stump. But this is a non-issue considering you have done away with the risk of a tree damaging your property during a storm.

Benefits of Tree Removal over the Winter

Winter is the optimal time for pruning and removing dead and diseased trees from your compound. This is because trees become dormant and with the lack of leaves the arborists have a clear line of sight. But what are the benefits of removing trees over the winter? Well here are some of the benefits:

  • Evaluation of the tree is simpler – As winter season gets closer, trees start becoming dormant and start dropping their leaves. When winter is finally upon us the trees are completely dormant and have no leaves. This makes it easy for the arborists to assess the tree structure and it is easier to spot dangerous or dead branches hanging on the trunk.
  • Spring appearance – Trees pruned over the winter period are able to recover more quickly before spring. Especially if they are done late in the winter you will have minimal time looking at a pruned tree.
  • Less chance of diseases spreading – Most of the insects, bacteria, fungi and parasites that spread and create disease are usually dead or dormant meaning the chances of developing problems with your tree, later on, is greatly reduced.

It is not unusual to have people believe that tree maintenance cannot be done during winter or that tree maintenance businesses do not operate during the cold and snowy months. Winter tree removal and pruning is key to have your tree looking amazing during spring and also reduces the chance of suffering damage to your property during a snowstorm.

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