By Daniel Stone of Bellarine Trees
Trees play an essential role in our ecosystem. They are responsible for providing us with two of the most important requirements that are integral to our survival. Trees provide us with food and oxygen. Also, they provide us with other necessities such as medicine, tools, clothing, and shelter.
Benefits of Trees
Trees are more than just decorative pieces in your garden or your farm. They provide many benefits to the environment and humans. These benefits include:
- Environmental benefits. Trees can help in cleaning the air. They absorb pollutant gases and odors and keeps the air free from harmful pollutants by trapping them in their bark and leaves. Trees can also help reduce your environment’s temperature by blocking the sunlight.
- Economic benefits. Trees help create livable communities. They increase an area’s sustainability. Trees are also one of humans’ most important sources of food, medicine, and materials for clothing and shelter.
- Other benefits. Trees are aesthetically pleasing. They can provide additional shade and beauty to your home or your farm. Having trees around your area or your property can give you a sense of serenity and relaxation.
Reasons Why Trees Die
Despite their significance, people often take trees for granted. These gigantic beauties are often neglected because people fail to grasp the idea that trees are also living beings. Neglect and improper care can both cause trees to die. Some of the other reasons include:
- Polluted air. Without suitable air for breathing, plants and humans will not be able to survive. Trees play a big part in the carbon cycle; however, if the air they live in is polluted, this can also affect their growth and lifespan.
- Lifeless soil. Different trees grow in different soil conditions. Before you plant a tree, you need to research how to do so correctly to ensure its growth in the long run.
- Old age. Just like humans, trees die because of old age. When trees grow old, they cannot fight off damages caused by extreme weather conditions. They are similar to old people, as their immune systems also deteriorate as they become older. Older trees do not have the protection they had when they were younger, resulting in damage and their eventual death.
- Natural calamities. There are times when trees fail to survive natural disasters as well. Extreme weather can damage and uproot trees, causing their death.
- Stress. Surprisingly, trees also get stressed. Just like humans, trees feel traumatized due to several reasons. Stress factors may include having too little or too much water; injuries from machines such as weed trimmers or lawnmower; pest or insect infestation; pollution or soil compaction.
- Humans. Many believe that pests and natural calamities are the primary reasons why trees die. However, many trees die under the axe. Humans are often the cause of death in trees due to illegal logging and deforestation. Businesses that require tree trunks cut down trees to sustain their operations. However, they sometimes fail to think about the consequences of their actions.
Signs Trees on Your Farm May be Dying
If you get your source of income and food from trees, you are obliged to take care of them. Trees may not be able to communicate with us, but they manifest signs that indicate their life may be ending. You may want to check these signs if your farm has plenty of trees:
- The tree has several splits and cracks. Cracks and splits are common in trees. However, the reason behind them can be due to the tree’s deteriorating health. When the splits and cracks are deep, they might indicate that the tree is already weak.
- There is visible decay and fungus. Identifying decay in trees can be a little tricky. Fungi and mushrooms may grow on the base or trunk of the trees. It is advisable to check the tree trunk to see if there are areas that are hollow and rotten.
- The branch unions are weak. Branch unions are the areas where the branches are connected to each other. If the unions are not attached securely, there might be a problem in the growth of the tree.
- There are dying limbs or wood. Dead wood is a dry piece of wood that can be dangerous when left unattended. They could cause injuries to the people walking past by the tree. If the piece of wood is already dry, there is no way to save it from dying.
- The tree architecture is poor. The tree’s architectural growth can also determine if it is already dying. Structural imbalance and abnormal growth are signs that the tree is neglected and is already dying.
Removing a dead tree is not an easy task. You need the assistance of a professional to dispose of the tree properly.
About the Author
Daniel has worked in the management, cutting, and caring of trees for the last 20 years. He works and helps run Bellarine Trees in Australia, providing tree removal, thinning and pruning, stump grinding, and other services that cater to the proper handling of trees. Daniel is passionate about the environment and tree worker safety. He has a wife and two daughters and he enjoys playing tennis in his spare time.