Signs Your Tree Is Reaching The End Of Its Life

If you have a large, old tree in your yard, you need to know that the tree itself does not become a liability. Make sure sure your home and your safety are protected. Trees have long life spans, but if you are living in an older home, you need to assess the age and health of your tree. If the tree is nearing the end of its life, you should contact a tree service to remove it. Here's how you can know if a tree will not be standing for much longer. 

1. Active insect infestation

Insects can attack healthy trees, but they are more likely to be seen in trees that are on the decline. Insects help to break down interior wood so that the tree can provide nutrients to other plants after it falls. If you have an older tree that is a haven for ants or termites, that tree likely has some interior rot. Sometimes, portions of the tree can seem healthy, but as the insects continue to use the tree for food and housing, more and more of the foliage will begin to die off. 

2. Dead branches without leaves or buds. 

A sure sign of a tree that is no longer healthy and growing is bare branches. Dead branches can sometimes occur because of blight or another illness, or because of an injury to the branch, But if you notice that fewer branches leaf out each year during spring time and that your tree produces no seeds or new buds, the tree itself can be dying. Another sign is increased production of suckers at the base of the trees with dead branches above. Trees try to reproduce in several ways, and sending out green suckers is the tree's way of trying to continue living as the main foliage and branches die. 

3. Missing bark.

As trees age, they shed bark to reveal newer bark underneath. But once a tree has lived its life and is no longer growing, the bark falls but it does not have anything underneath. Instead, you'll just see smooth patches of bare trunk. These patches make the tree vulnerable. The tree is allowing insects and pathogens to access the inner wood to begin the process of decay. 

4. Other plant growth

Finally, your tree won't usually be a host for moss, fungus, or wild mushrooms. These grow on trees that have started to decay inside, because the decaying wood provided the rich nutrients, and the fungus and mosses themselves also help in the process of breaking down the wood. 

If you notice these signs, your tree could fall over or break, especially in a storm. Contact a tree service like R. L. Elliott Enterprises, Inc. to remove the tree as soon as possible.