Hearing the word Deadwood might trigger your thought to the TV show in the 1800s Deadwood, South Dakota. But we are here to talk about deadwood as it relates to your tree. Let’s discuss deadwood and why tree deadwood removal is essential.

What is Deadwood?

Deadwood is a portion of a tree that has died but is still attached to the tree. It is a normal part of a tree cycle. It may occur as;

  • branches that do not grow leaves,
  • dry branches that break easily,
  • branches that hold on to dead leaves when the tree has shed its leaves for the season,
  • areas with no bark.

Why Does Your Tree Have Deadwood?

A percentage of trees are self-pruning. They drop their interior or lower branches that are no longer needed. Also, as the tree canopy grows, these branches receive less sunlight which renders them dead over time.

Deadwood is found in all trees but mostly in the fast-growing and mature trees.  The causes of deadwood include;

  • Tree disease
  • Animal damage
  • Insect damage
  • Root damage
  • Water stress
  • Inadequate sunlight due to shading of interior tree branches.

More often, deadwood can indicate a tree problem, such as damage or poor health.  But it doesn’t always denote tree health issues.

What is deadwooding?

Deadwooding is the procedure involved in pruning and removal of dead branches and limbs of a tree’s canopy. When deadwooding your tree, it should be carried out with care while using the proper tools.

It is best you hire professional tree deadwood removal so as to avoid injuries to yourself and damage to the tree when removing dead branches.

How do you identify deadwood?

Though deadwood may sound easy to detect, for the untrained eye, it often goes unnoticed.  There are a few ways of detecting deadwood in a tree.

  • During winter, identify branches that hold onto their leaves after the rest have dropped for the season. Dead branches keep their leaves after the rest have dropped. However, it is important to know that some trees, such as oak and beech, keep their leaves longer into the winter season and it is not a sign of deadwood.
  • An area of the tree lacking bark also indicates deadwood. Bark naturally fall off trees but are replaced with new bark growth on healthy trees. Barks that fall off will not be replaced on unhealthy trees, thereby exposing the smooth layers below the bark’s surface.
  • You can also scrape the wood lightly to determine if it is dead or not. If the exposed layer is brown, the branch is dead. If the layer is green, the tree is still living.


Reasons Why You Should Remove Deadwood

Though deadwood is a part of a tree cycle, it doesn’t mean it should not be removed. If left on the trees, deadwood can pose a danger to you and your property. Since it could also signal a tree problem, why not have it removed to maintain the tree health.

  1. The major reason to have deadwood removed is to avoid personal injury or property damage. Dead branches pose a serious risk if they fall on people or property. Storms or even light winds can break dry branches. Small or large deadwood branches can be detrimental to you, your property and neighbors if not removed.
  2. The dead part of the wood may serve as an attraction for pests and diseases. Deadwood is a major point for decay which will cause the tree to rot. This can attract pest infestation and disease (fungal) infection.
  3. It becomes an eyesore to your property.  A lot of deadwood in your tree will not produce a good look. It will thereby decrease the aesthetics value of your landscape.
  4. Removing dead branches will allow for sunlight into your trees. This ensures new branches are grown which in turn maintain the tree health. Also, not removing deadwood can inhibit the natural form and shape of your tree.
  5. Some government regulations require a specified diameter of dead branches to be removed to ensure public safety.

Why Call a Tree Removal Professional?

Removing deadwood, just like every other tree service can be dangerous. If carried out by someone who does not have the proper tools and lacks the required knowledge, possible dangers may arise. It can lead to more damage to the tree if done wrongly and you might also put yourself at risk.

Deadwood can sometimes be located high in the tree. Removing this deadwood can be a high risk for you. Professionals will use the most accurate tools needed to perform the job.

Combined with the removal of deadwood, a professional tree service can examine the tree to determine the causes of deadwood. The tree roots and soil can be checked to determine possible health issues that may arise. They will also recommend tips to maintain your tree health.