Proper trimming, cutting damaged branches allows trees to heal properly

Apr. 27—JAMESTOWN — It is important to trim trees properly and cut damaged branches so it (THEY???) can heal properly, according to Jerry Steinmetz, co-owner of Northern Tree Service with his wife, Lindsey.

Steinmetz said his business removed tree branches from roofs shortly after the ice storm in December. He said some broken branches stayed in the trees while others landed on roofs.

"It did roof damage, so those were the first ones we attacked," he said.

He said they removed tree branches from roofs and trimmed branches hanging from trees.

"Another big one was just clearing lawns and picking up debris the best we could," he said.

Steinmetz said it isn't typical to work in December or January.

"The year before we couldn't even do anything there was so much snow," he said.

He said it's important to take care of trees damaged from excess amounts of ice or high winds. He said the branches could cause damage to vehicles and houses or could hurt somebody.

"It's also important to get them cut off and trimmed properly so the tree can heal properly," he said.

Steinmetz said damaged trees can become healthy again if they don't have major damage.

"If they had major damage and it cracked the tree in the big wood, you might as well take them down," he said.

If a tree gets split down the middle it needs to be supported by cabling and bracing, he said.

Homeowners can also prune branches to prevent damage to trees. Steinmetz said lateral branches where rotting or decaying spots should be taken down. He said those branches can be susceptible to breaking during heavy winds or ice storms.

He said some tree branches start rotting because a tree branch broke. He said fungal conks or mushrooms growing from the tree are an indication of rot.

"If you see those, you know that the branch has got core rot in it," he said.

Steinmetz said proper pruning prevents bugs from getting into a tree trunk. If stubs are left on the tree trunk or a branch breaks from the wind, the tree is susceptible to bugs.

"If you prune it properly back to the trunk, it will heal over, callus over and then bugs can't get into it," he said. "So you need to trim them back."

He said emerald ash borer starts at the top of a tree but proper pruning methods can prevent that as well.

Lindsey Steinmetz said homeowners can call a tree service anytime to get an estimate.

"You might find out how reasonable it is to have a tree removed in a certain situation," she said. "If you are worried about your tree, call a licensed arborist or the city forester. Have them come and assess it. We all know the signs of what's decayed or what's a problem tree. We can either recommend to trim it or remove it."

Jerry Steinmetz said tree services deal with any tree problems and tree care. He said his business will assess what needs to be done with trees. Northern Tree Service doesn't do anything with spraying, but he said he knows other businesses that do.

He said homeowners should contact a tree service or the city forester before they plant a new tree. He said many factors need to be considered before planting a tree including tree depth, size of the hole and what to plant.

David Zorn, owner of Z's Trees, said the city forester will know what to plant.