When To Remove A Crowded Tree

Posted on: 10 April 2020


Crowding can turn a previously healthy tree into a hazard to your home. Whether it's branches that are damaging your house, roots with nowhere else to grow, or problems that are caused by the neighboring trees, knowing when to remove the crowded tree can help you avoid further damage to your property.

It's Too Close to Your Home

Trees that growing right up against a home, building, or a driveway are a unique hazard. Branches can break windows or damage the roof and siding during storms, while the roots pose a risk to foundations and paving. If the expected mature size of the tree puts the canopy within a few feet of the house, then removal is the safest option. Otherwise, you could end up with expensive and potentially dangerous tree damage to your home.

The Tree Is Out Competed

Trees that are crowded by other trees suffer due to poor competition for nutrients and water. A tree is more likely to be out competed by a larger tree with similar cultural requirements. If you must grow trees closely together, it's vital to choose varieties with differing mature heights and cultural needs, such as planting a low growing understory tree near a taller shade tree. If the out-competed tree is leafing out poorly or showing other signs of distress, then removal may be necessary.

Disease Is a Major Concern

Disease can spread rapidly from tree to tree if they are growing too closely together. Blights and mildews, for example, only affect a single tree in most cases because the spores don't travel far on their own. If trees are crowded, the spores can spread rapidly between trees and lead to the death of both. By removing a tree or two to thin them out, you can minimize the chances of a disease spreading rapidly through your landscape.

The Roots Are Too Constricted

The canopy might have plenty of room to grow, but that means nothing if the roots are too constricted. In fact, an overly large canopy puts a lot of stress on a constrained root system. The weight alone of the larger canopy can increase the chance of uprooting. If the tree roots are lifting to the surface or wrapping around the base of the tree, then the roots may be constricted. You may also notice issues like churned up soil after a wind storm, which can indicate that the roots are about to fail and the tree will fall.

For more information on crowded trees, reach out to a company like Robert Jefferies Logging & Tree Service.