As the winter has dragged on, I have noticed a lot of downed tree limbs throughout my yard. That got me to wondering about trimming my trees in the Fall before the snow and ice comes. After all, it is pretty easy to just pick them up and burn them with the dead leaves. So I did a little research and this is what I found out.
If you look at a dead limb on a tree, you will notice good strong branches growing around it. This is a trees way of protecting itself. Many trees in the forest have nobody to care for them and they live on rather well. Dead limbs that fall to the ground end up eventually providing food for microorganisms that makes fertilizer for other trees and forest growth.
Trees in Yards
First, dead limbs that are left on trees are avenues for insects, parasites, disease and future damage to the tree.
Second, dead limbs fall and do damage to the things below. Things like autos, roofs, windows, bushes, and toys can be hurt.
Third, if the tree has a lot of dead branches on it, this will be a drain of the life of a healthy tree.
Fourth, if the dead branch is between good ones, it will slow the growth process on the limbs near by.
Fifth, dead limbs attract animals. Many animals will use the limbs for nests. Usually these nests are built in that tree. This means added damage to the tree.
Removing Dead Limbs
It is not safe and worth it to remove dead limbs by yourself. If they need to come down, hire an experienced tree cutter. this is especially true in the winter. Limb removal should be left to professionals. Leaving the limb unattended to for a short time will not hurt anything.
When it is removed, it is suggested to cut it off as close to the trunk as possible. This will not hurt the tree. If the linb is very big, remove small pieces at a time. Always be sure that you are secure in the tree or on a ladder. Try to never lay your ladder against the limb you are cutting.