We look for clues about the tree’s health and patterns of the problem, to determine how best to meet your Kalamazoo landscape’s needs. For example, a deciduous tree placed in the middle of a lawn may have turf right up to the trunk. Damage to the bark could be incidental, such as running into the tree repeatedly with a string weed trimmer. The tree could be overwatered, since the amount of water needed to keep a lawn green is more than what the tree needs to keep its deeper roots alive.
A wound in the bark that’s oozing sap could be a sign of borers, an insect that requires chemical or organic insecticide treatment. Leaf tips turning brown could be a sign of a disease process, or it could mean too much fertilizer was used on the lawn or flower beds in the surrounding area.
Many people worry about lichens and fungi, but don’t know the difference between them. Lichen is natural and will not harm the tree, but a fungus can rot the wood it’s growing on, calling for intervention.
We review recent activity around the tree. The drip line is only one indicator of how far roots extend. Trenching or other activity that has disturbed the roots could cause lasting problems, but with an appropriate care plan, the tree can be saved. Running over shallow roots with a lawnmower or heavy traffic can also disturb tree growth.