Storm damage takes a serious toll on various aspects of your property, but broken tree limbs and beaten down shrubs do not mean that all is lost. Homeowners can do several things to bring beauty back to their property after a major storm, both on their own and with the help of professionals. Find out how to help your trees survive storm damage with a few easy steps.  Learn more about our storm damage cleanup services.

Inspect and Assess Damage

The first stage involves a thorough inspection of the property. Jot down notes as you walk around and take pictures to record the damage and have a point of reference for recovery. Pay attention to how different parts of the storm affected your landscape features and trees — wind, rain, hail and snow do damage in particular ways.

Use this assessment to make a list of priorities. Consider safety and plan to tackle the projects that present the greatest danger first.

Prune Immediately

If possible, plan to prune branches within easy reach right away. This might not be safe when dealing with the aftereffects of winter storms. In that case your tree care professional may suggest waiting until the spring thaw to prune away broken, damaged branches and tree limbs.

Cutting in the proper location and manner makes all the difference to overall tree recovery. Loose bark, gaps and cracks from breakage all present an ideal haven for unwanted disease and pests long after the storm. Be sure to cut or prune branches close to the trunk, yet beyond the collar of the branch. When in doubt, call a tree care professional or an arborist to make the cuts for you. It’s worth the investment to be sure your tree will survive and flourish. Remember that larger branches require a saw for pruning, and that the improper use of chainsaws can do serious damage to tree bark.

Have a Closer Look at the Bark

Broken branches are obvious effects of a storm, but did you know that the torn or loose bark that results from heavy winds and breakage may do more damage to your trees? Insects and disease thrive in these areas, and uneven or torn bark captures debris and water which could damage the tree over time. Remove torn bark carefully using clean tools such as a pruning knife or chisel, always cutting or trimming at right angles to the tree’s surface. Avoid cutting firm bark, but anything loosened by bent or broken limbs can be carefully trimmed away after the storm.

Have a look around your property after a storm to assess storm damage. Prune away branches that can be safely accessed and plan to get tree bark back into shape in order to keep your trees and shrubs healthy post-storm. Your local tree care professional has the knowledge and tools to help you restore your beautiful property and protect the landscape for the next storm.