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Tree damage during Noreaster Athena on November 7, 2012. Athena is the first named Noreaster ever as the naming convention has just begun. Location is Monmouth County, New Jersey.
Cathy Isom has some tips on what to do if your trees are damaged by winter storms. That’s coming up on This Land of Ours.

Download Winter Tree Damage

While we can’t always predict what Mother Nature will do every winter, we do know that snow and ice storms, accompanied by heavy winds are a probability which could threaten our trees. The worst kind of damage happens when an ice storm creates a buildup of ice on the branches, resulting in some breakage. Charles Barton, an Extension Forestry Specialist from Kansas State University Extension, says if you’re not sure what to do about the damage, first you have to decide if there is anything you can do.
TORONTO - DECEMBER 23, 2013: Winter ice storm aftermath showing devastation caused to trees.

if it’s a young tree, say 6 inches in diameter or less it can be damaged quite severely and with some pruning it can come back in a year or two and have regained its form.  If it’s a mature tree however something like more of foot in diameter or larger or a 50-foot tree if it has close to a half of its crown damage it may be better just to remove.

So if you do consider pruning broken or stressed branches, keep these important tips in mind.
TORONTO - DECEMBER 23, 2013: Winter ice storm aftermath showing devastation caused to trees.

if it’s a large tree, especially near power lines, a homeowner should really rely on professional help who has the right tools and training to do the work safely.  If it’s a small tree in the yard, a birch tree or fruit tree or something that they can comfortably work on the ground or just from a stepladder then most homeowners can do the work themselves.

Barton says recommends removing damaged branches now, then doing repairs before the spring growth starts.

I’m Cathy Isom…

Image credits: (top left) Tree damage during Noreaster Athena on November 7, 2012. Athena is the first named Noreaster ever as the naming convention has just begun. Location is Monmouth County, New Jersey.
Photography ID: 15331559
Copyright: stevebonk/depositphotos

(lower right/lower left) Winter ice storm aftermath showing devastation caused to trees.
Photography ID: 37763581/37763585
Copyright: njene/depositphotos

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