Winter storms can occasionally cause trees to become covered in ice. Knowing what ice can do to your trees' branches and how to avoid problems in the future can help you take care of your trees and protect your property from damage.
How does ice damage your tree?
Ice can weigh down your trees' branches, causing them to bow toward the ground. Ice can also make your trees' branches more brittle, resulting in structural breakage.
What should you do to remedy the problem?
The first thing you should do if your trees' branches become covered in ice is to wait for the ice to melt. Even if some of the branches have broken and are hanging from the trees, you should not try to climb into the trees. Because the branches are already weighed down with ice, trying to remove dead branches before the ice has melted is likely to result in loss of more branches and may cause injury.
Once the ice has melted, then you should begin the process of carefully removing dead branches that are now hanging from the crown of the trees. Do not climb into the trees to do this. Use a free-standing ladder and a pole pruning lopper to reach the branches. If there are branches that you can't reach, or if there are branches that are too thick for the lopper, contact a tree trimming service, like R. L. Elliott Enterprises, Inc., to safely remove those branches.
Is there anyway that you can prevent ice from damaging your trees in the future?
Have your trees professionally trimmed before winter arrives. This will ensure that any weak or diseased branches are gone before the first winter storms. Since the weakest branches are the ones most likely to be damaged by ice, this can help your trees to avoid ice damage throughout the winter.
For dwarf trees, you can also try wrapping the trees in a wrap designed specifically to protect trees. These wraps can provide insulation from the cold. For larger trees, wrapping the branches in Christmas lights can help, because Christmas lights can keep the branches warm.
For more information about what ice damage can do to your trees and how you can protect your trees from ice damage this winter, contact a professional tree trimming service in your area. Your tree trimmer can give you advice and help you determine which trees on your property need to be trimmed.