Storm Preparedness Guide for Your Trees

Why worry about storm preparedness for your property’s trees? All trees are a beautiful addition to any landscape, but they can be hazardous during and after severe weather. 

G&V offers reputable tree services in Alexandria, VA, and nearby areas. Below, these local tree experts share tips to keep your trees safe during thunderstorms.

10 Tree-Specific Preparation Tips for Bad Weather

Whether you have large or small trees on your Virginia property, it pays to prepare them for storms before disaster strikes and invalidates your insurance policies. Here are ten valuable tree-specific tips to help you do that:

1. Do a Pre-Storm Tree Inspection

Is your area expecting a thunderstorm or hurricane? Inspect your trees before the storm hits. You might also want to look for termites or other insects living in or under the bark of your trees and weaken them.

If you notice any damage, call a professional arborist like G&V as soon as possible. Early intervention may help to prevent structural damage and save unprotected trees.

2. Trim Low-Hanging Tree Branches

It is always a good idea to trim branches away from power lines and doors and windows. Cleared space will also make it easier for emergency responders to get in and out of your home if you need to evacuate during a storm.

3. Secure Loose Items

Have you drawn up a storm preparedness plan? Your plan should include tying down all outdoor furniture and other structures that could damage the home, its residents, or its trees in strong winds or floods.

4. Remove Dead Tree Limbs

In the same way that loose furniture could smash windows or crash through walls, dead limbs on a tree can break off during a bad storm. Remove dead limbs before a storm hits, so they do not fall on the people or cars below.

5. Don’t Forget Landscaping

Remember to trim hedges and smaller trees before a storm too. Otherwise, they could blow over, block driveways, or damage vehicles during high winds.

6. Water Trees Regularly

Keeping trees well-watered during dry weather could prevent drought stress that weakens their root systems. If you keep them strong, trees will be less susceptible to storm damage.

7. Thin Out Any Thick-Canopied Trees

One of the best tips to prepare for a storm is to thin out the canopy of larger trees. It makes them more wind resistant and less likely to sustain damage during a storm.

8. Avoid Lion-tailing Trees

If you have ever removed smaller branches from larger ones and left only a tuft of foliage at the ends, you’ll understand why it is called lion-tailing. Over lifting, which is removing too many of the lower tree branches, and lion-tailing are both techniques that will weaken the tree.

9. Prune Carefully

Tree experts warn against flush cuts when pruning. Leaving a stub at least 3 inches long is far healthier and will reduce the risk of disease or insect infestation.

10. Plant Good Quality Trees and Trees Adapted to Virginia

The final tip is to plant good-quality trees. Healthy trees will likely survive any bout of Virginia weather. Why not look at the hardy American Elm or American Red Oak as the next addition?

Great Local Tree Care Service in Alexandria, VA

Storms are a fact of life in Alexandria, VA, but it pays to prepare your trees and property before the weather hits. At G&V, our tree service includes exceptional storm-related services, such as raising the tree canopy to keep trees looking fabulous ahead of the next hurricane season.

Call G&V at 703-337-3080 today to learn more about storm preparedness from our ISA-certified team in Alexandria, VA.