Arbor 911: How to Tell When Your Trees Aren’t Healthy

You love those oak trees and birches. Nothing makes you happier than firs and sweetbays. So of course, it goes without saying that you want your trees to be happy.

Sadly, there is no tree hotline to call and talk them through a rough patch; all trees have is you, so it’s up to you to ensure their environment and health is the best it can be. Here are a few signs to look for that indicate your trees need help … and what to do about them.

Missing or Unusual Leaves

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, leaves are a great key to tree health. Look for “distorted leaves and stems,” “growth stimulation,” and “stunted and reduced leaves” as warning signs.

Missing Fruit and Flowers

If your tree is supposed to produce flowers or fruit at a certain time of year and you see a) nothing or b) much reduced fruit, that’s a sign. Call in a tree pro to diagnose the issue immediately.

Abnormal Fungus Growth

A little fungus can be normal, but overnight uprisings of mushrooms around the base of the tree or up its sides usually indicates rot, decay, or otherwise unhealthy conditions.

Dieback, Wilt, or Collapse

This is one of the clearest signs of tree unhappiness, says the United Nations. It can stem from insufficient water supply, too much water, disease, or dieback from old age.

Lesions or Cankers

Problems on the surface of the tree are a clear indicator that all is not well in tree world. “Cankers vary from those with sunken centers to others with raised edges and some with more general swellings,” says the UN, adding that spots, blotches, scabs, pits, holes, and other blemishes are all bad signs as well. This may result from disease, animal feeding, or pest activity – and needs a specialist’s review.

Need Help? Call a Pro

Premier Tree Solutions is a growing tree removal business based in Atlanta, Georgia. We specialize in a number of areas, including tree trimming and pruning, tree and stump removal, storm damage, and cleanup, branch clearing, and debris removal. And… we have three Certified Arborists on staff!

Give us a call at 404.252.6448 for an unhappy tree consult today, and we’ll make a plan to get your babies in ship shape fast. Emergency? Call 404.569.8897 instead, and we’ll be there in a jiffy.

Let It Blow, Let It Blow: 4 Ways to Prep Your Trees for Strong Winds

Trees, like people, are sensitive to extreme weather. While these firmly rooted landscape specimens can certainly withstand more gale force than you can, they don’t like to be battered about by strong winds – and can eventually suffer severe damage without protection.

If you live in areas where tornado/hurricane warnings are common, you’re probably wondering what you can do to better prepare your trees for the madness. Also important, which things can you do yourself, and which do you need to call in a pro for? Let’s talk about that today.

  1. Prune Judiciously in Spring and Fall

First and foremost, prune. It’s tempting to “leave well enough alone” when a tree is doing fine, but weak branches are hard to spot visually. You need a pro up there examining them and removing anything unstable. That way, when a storm comes through, only the strongest branches must withstand it.

Depending on the tree, summer may also be a good time to prune. Typically, when it’s cold and resources are reduced, you should avoid pruning in winter.

  1. Remove Older Trees

Although it may seem harsh, some trees simply aren’t storm-safe. If you have a tree on your property that drops limbs frequently because it’s old and brittle, it probably needs to go. Consider getting rid of it before the storm hits.

  1. Create a Windscreen

Although we usually think of windscreens as for the benefit of other types of plants, trees can screen trees as well. If you want to protect your yard, it pays to play a long game and set up strong trees around the perimeter.

  1. Be Especially Careful with Trees Close to Buildings

Damage during storms frequently comes at the hands (or would that be twigs) of dropped limbs. Examine each tree near a home carefully and remove anything that looks even slightly suspicious if it is overhanging a structure. That’s another task that requires a pro.

Looking for that pro today? Call in Premier Tree Solutions for help. We specialize in helping tree owners feel secure and keeping their landscapes safe. In addition to preventing trees from wind and floods and other natural disasters, we also do branch thinning and pruning, storm cleanup, tree removal, stump grinding, and more. We invite you to call 404.252.6448 for a consultation today, or in an emergency, 404.569.8897.

Let us help you today!

BE A GEORGIA TREE KNOW-IT-ALL: YAUPON HOLLY

Get to know Georgia’s beautiful array of trees and how you can take care of your own! Each month, we feature some of the most popular trees in the state. For September, we are showcasing the Yaupon Holly. Learn all about the Yaupon Holly below!

Yaupon Holly Tree

Watery Wisdom: How to Protect Your Trees from Flooding

Everyone loves a nice summer shower. It lifts the spirits. It brings temperatures down. It’s good for the trees.

… right?

Well, the truth is, not always. Some trees can sicken if they’re exposed to too much rain and flooding, especially over a long period of time. It’s smart to take steps before and during the rainy season to make sure your trees get the TLC they need to stay safe from floods.

Flooding and Oxygen Deprivation Go Hand in Hand

Many people don’t understand how flooding affects trees because they assume that water is simply “good for” any plant. The truth is, though, plants and trees rely on oxygen just like you or me. Enough standing water and trees actually drown, unable to take up oxygen because they’re simply too saturated.

Another misconception is that trees draw their nutrients, water, and oxygen from down deep, and while that’s true to an extent, they get the majority of their oxygen from the first 6 inches of soil. When that’s covered with water, they physically cannot breathe. No Bueno.

Signs and Symptoms of Flooding

Most trees will tolerate a certain amount of flooding for short periods of time. You don’t need to worry until you see the following signs:

  • Yellowing or browning of leaves or needles out of season
  • Dropping of leaves or needles
  • Wilting
  • Splitting or cracking
  • General failure to thrive

Prevention Is the Best Cure

While you can hastily amend soils in preparation for stormy weather, the best idea is to keep trees out of a jam by planting only flood-tolerant trees in areas that frequently see standing water.

If you don’t want to move a well-established tree, you can also use a bioswale to direct water away from it, toward draining in another part of the yard. You can also reroute downspouts away from trees and plant water-retaining plants above them as a buffer.

Get Help from a Certified Arborist

Bottom line? Help from a certified arborist is guaranteed to keep your trees in tip-top shape. Your arborist can help you prevent disease, respond to catastrophes and keep trees safe over the long haul.

So, are you worried this hot and heavy season will affect your trees for the worse? Call Premier Tree Solutions to help you care for your backyard beauties they way they deserve. We specialize in a number of areas, including tree removal and trimming, pruning and storm damage care, branch clearing, debris removal, and stump grinding.

Need help with anything tree-related? Call today!

5 Things You Don’t Know About Oak Trees, But Should

Oak-y dokey! Ready to learn all about one of nature’s most awe-inspiring arboreal accomplishments, the mighty oak?

If you’ve always been quercus(curious, obviously) about this grandest of trees, we’ve got you covered here. The fantastic Quercus genus is full of beautiful specimens, thriving all over the world, giving shade and bright color, and never failing to bring a stately touch to landscapes of all types.

Let’s get started.

1. Oaks Are HUGE

Oaks can reach as high as 70 feet or more, with crowns spreading more than 130 from end to end. That’s amazing on a rolling field, but can be dangerous when you plant one ten feet from the house. Take note of final size before putting in that sampling.

2. Oak Trees Will Live Almost Anywhere

It’s true! Very few environments can deter an oak tree … at least, if you live in the contiguous United States. They’ll happily take root anywhere across the continent except for Alaska, and even grow in Hawaii. Whatever your USDA plant hardiness zone, there’s an oak for you, so check it out.

3. Fall Color for All

Oak trees display almost every type of fall color, from pale yellow to orange to deep scarlet to caramel browns. Whatever your yard’s color scheme in autumn, an oak will do. During spring and summer, oak leaves are typically a deep green, and the bare winter branches make a true statement in winter, especially for long-established specimens.

4. Acorns Are Choosy!

Oaks may produce as many as 2,000 acorns every year, but only 1 in 10,000 acorns will turn into a full-grown oak tree.

5. Oak Trees Come in More Than 600 Varieties

The oak genus is one of the most prolific and variable on Earth, with more than 600 species in existence (that we know of). Species may either be deciduous or evergreen.

The bottom line? Oaks are a mainstay of the backyard and garden. Whether you’re looking for bright color, sweeping shade or a sturdy limb from which to hang a tree swing, Quercus has you covered.

Looking for help with your oaks or other trees? Give Premier Tree Solutions a call. We can help you with tree trimming and pruning, branch removal, storm cleanup, stump grinding, debris removal and more. Whatever you need, we can help, so don’t hesitate to call today.

BE A GEORGIA TREE KNOW-IT-ALL: SWEETBAY TREE

Get to know Georgia’s beautiful array of trees and how you can take care of your own! Each month, we feature some of the most popular trees in the state. For August, we are showcasing the Sweetbay tree. Learn all about Sweebay trees below!

The Value of Tree Care: By the Numbers

Daily life is hectic. In the midst of all of your personal and professional responsibilities, how on Earth are you supposed to fit in tree care? Is it really necessary?

The answer to that is a solid yes. The truth is, tree care is far more valuable than you might think. Let’s take a look at the numbers together.

1. Increasing Property Value

According to data from the Council of Tree and Landscape Appraisers, each tree on your property is worth up to $10,000 in property value. Many home shoppers are looking for sweeping shade, mature landscaping and privacy – services trees provide.

Proper tree care can keep your arboreal additions alive and thriving over the long haul. Whether you’re hoping to sell your house soon or want to retain its value over the next three decades, helping those trees is critical.

2. Preventing Unforeseen Expenses

Sometimes storms or other acts of nature damage trees, and there’s nothing you can do about that. However, we humans are often the cause of tree destruction, from failing to prune properly, to topping trees, to allowing suckers to proliferate. It’d be better for you (and your trees) in the long run to develop a habit of regularly scheduling tree care and check-ups from professionals, instead of having to pay for a way bigger job needed due to tree neglect.

3. Avoiding Tree Replacement Costs

When something does happen to your trees, you have to deal with more than the loss of property value and the expense of dealing with the damage or removal of that tree. You also have to replace it.

Unfortunately, that’s quite an expensive proposition. Online trees can go for as much as $100 for a 6-foot peach, and $50 for a 3-foot one. That’s far from mature, too, and your local nursery will almost certainly charge even higher rates. Wouldn’t you prefer to avoid the need?

How’s that for a reason to give your trees a little more TLC? If you’re looking for help in that department, Premier Tree Solutions is here for you. We specialize in tree removal, tree trimming, tree pruning, storm damage, storm cleanup, stump grinding, branch clearing, and debris removal. Whatever you need, we’re here to help.

Caring for the Diva in Your Midst: Italian Cypress 101

Want a taste of the Old World right in your new backyard? Italian cypress trees are lovely to look at, lending the impression of an ancient Roman Senator’s driveway or a king’s grand palace.

Perhaps fittingly, just like senators and kings, Italian cypresses can be divas. (Tree-vas?) But while Cupressus sempervirens– also known as the Mediterranean cypress, Persian cypress, Tuscan cypress, and pencil pine – is famously finicky, you can keep it healthy and happy with the right tree care.

Here’s your basic four-step plan.

1. Plant in Full Sun

Italian cypress does not appreciate shade. Not one dappled lick of it. Instead, plant your cypress in full sun, says Missouri Botanical Garden, which is defined as at least six hours per day. If you’ve already planted a little guy up close to the house or in a similarly shady spot, go ahead and transplant early in the morning on a cloudy day to minimize shock.

2. Provide Light, Loamy Soil

The Italian cypress likes lots of moisture, but of the fast-draining variety. Therefore, the happiest cypresses live in loamy soil with a good amount of sand. If that’s not your natural environment, you can up the drainage by mixing in some compost and a bit of sand.

3. Water a Medium Amount

Despite their origination in regions – Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Syria – the Italian cypress likes a medium amount of water. While it will tolerate some drought, that’s not until it gets established, until which point it needs consistently moist soil. Stick a metal rod into the soil to test; if it sinks easily up to a foot or so, you’re good. If you can’t get it to penetrate, it’s time for water – a deep soaking rather than sprinkling.

4. Prune Intelligently

Pruning is an art form, meant to enhance the health and beauty of the tree, which means you need to finesse the job. Trim off dead or dying branches past the point where the browning starts. Trim healthy branches only to the point where they help you showcase the natural shape of the tree, and never cut the top off.

Not quite sure you can handle the job yourself? Get in touch with Premier Tree Solutions. We handle trimming and pruning, blush clearing, storm cleanup, and more. Give us a call at 404.252.6448 or, in an emergency, at 404.569.8897. We are proud to offer the best possible service to tree-vas everywhere … and their owners.

BE A GEORGIA TREE KNOW-IT-ALL: UMBRELLA MAGNOLIA

Get to know Georgia’s beautiful array of trees and how you can take care of your own! Each month, we feature some of the most popular trees in the state. For July, we are showcasing the Umbrella Magnolia tree. Learn all about Umbrella Magnolia trees below!

4 Reasons You Need an Awesome (and Certified) Arborist

Trees are trees, right? How much help could you really need with them?

Tell that to your elderly elm, which needs a little more attention due to its dropped twigs, or your pining pine, which clearly needs a site with less water.

The thing is, trees are finicky about their needs and surroundings – just like trees and animals. If you’re not sure how to treat them, you need help. That’s where a certified arborist comes in. Here are four reasons you need one.

1. Certified Arborists Offer Lots of Resources

Not sure how to water your trees during the summer months or where to site that new oak tree you just picked up from the nursery? Hint: If you’re hoping to see that tree reach a ripe old age so your grandkids can swing from it, you need to plant it in the right place. These are the tips an arborist can bring to the table.

2. They Can Catch Pests in the Early Stages

Creepy-crawlies are a fact of life. Most of us are trained to find serenity whenever we see icky bugs on the surfaces that surround us, including plants and trees. However, just like in your basement, some bugs are harmless but some can cause serious damage. A certified arborist can help you recognize the bugs to watch out for each season and make a plan for dealing with them.

3. Arborists Help Your Trees Weather Storms

Whether (get it?) you’ve recently had a storm or are headed into thundershower season, it pays to know how to keep your trees safe. An arborist will help you prune correctly to ensure strong branches, and they can assist you in cleaning up after storms that cause cracks or broken branches in your trees. Bring it on, Zeus.

Oops, sorry … we meant Thor.

4. They Know a Lot About Urban Tree Care

Much of the information about tree care available online today presupposes that you live in a rural setting, or at least in the suburbs. But lots of people who live in the city care about their trees as well, and an arborist can help you determine how best to keep your branched beauties safe on the busy streets of Atlanta.

Need help? Premier Tree Solutions is a family-run business offering a huge range of arboreal services, including tree removal and trimming, pruning and storm damage repairs and cleanup, stump removal and grinding, debris removal, and more.

Looking to green up that beautiful yard and keep healthy trees alive for years to come? Just give us a call at 404.252.6448, or for an emergency, call 404.569.8897. Don’t wait to speak to your certified arboreal expert today.