The February ice storm tore through Memphis, felling trees and resulting in widespread power outages. Although the ice-covered trees were beautiful, they were dangerous and presented many hazards. The time to take care of your trees is when it is safe to do so. An initial assessment of the damage may be a bit overwhelming but do not panic. If the tree does not present an immediate hazard, wait a few weeks before making your final decision.
If a tree requires immediate attention, be sure to seek the services of a certified arborist. A certified arborist is an individual who has gained certification from the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). A certified arborist can determine the best course of action to save a tree or remove it if it cannot be rescued.
After storms, people claiming to be professionals may come to your door offering their services. These individuals may have little to no training and are exploiting the situation to make a quick profit. Check to see if that person is a member of a professional association like ISA. Also verify current certificates of insurance for personal liability and property damage. If they have a website, read their services and reviews.
If you decide to take care of the damage yourself, follow safety precautions and best practices. Assess for downed power lines, broken branches and hanging limbs. Exercise caution when using a chainsaw. Resist the urge to perform excessive pruning and do not “top” your trees. Finally, you can always hire a professional arborist to do the work for you!
Arbor Day in Tennessee is March 4. The Memphis Botanic Garden will celebrate Arbor Day by giving away native tree saplings to the public. This would be a great way to replace trees that were a casualty of the ice storm! Please contact me at 901-752-1207 if you have any questions. I am happy to assist you!
Photo Credit: Julie Morgan