Snow: The Good & The Bad

It's that time of the year again! You know what we mean - WINTER! And with winter comes snowfall! The children do not seem to mind it too much (the snow) but to many homeowners, snow can be a real hassle. As pretty as it can be, snow is notorious for causing traffic delays, accidents, and a host of other not-so-pleasant events.

One real issue that snow can cause is damage to trees and shrubs! This is especially true when we get a real heavy, wet snow. Not only is it more difficult to shovel, it is really hard on plants.

Every time we receive a heavy snow, the snow collects on the branches of trees and shrubs. This added weight, combined with the colder temperatures and drier air can cause branches to break, snap, or splinter. Depending upon the number and types of trees you have, this can cost thousands of dollars in damage! This is especially true for ornamental trees.

If a heavy snowfall occurs during a period when trees have a lot of leaves on them, breakage is more likely. The added surface area that the leaves provide gives the snow more places to collect. This can add a significant amount of weight to the branches and cause them to snap off suddenly or fracture.

Heavy snow  does not typically damage evergreen trees nearly as much, as their branches naturally droop towards the ground. Since the added weight of snow only causes them to bend in a natural direction, pines and other types of evergreen trees are not damaged as often or as severely during heavy snowfall or ice. This is not to say that they do not receive any damage. They are normally able to withstand the added weight better than other trees.

*Worse than snow is ice! It collects on the entire surface of the tree and can weigh many times more than heavy snow. Tree damage due to ice is very common.

Even though the snow does cause harm to trees and shrubs, it can provide benefits as well. The snow is a good insulator for the ground. With a good snow cover, the ground temperature can stabilize and thus protect the roots. When the ground heats up and freezes, it can heave, which can damage the root system of the trees and shrubs.

If you have suffered any tree damage this year, call the professionals at Arbor Barber Tree (609) 847-5047. We will trim the damaged areas and work to save your tree(s). We can also use tree cabling to repair many damaged branches.

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