When to Call for Tree Surgery: Signs Your Trees Need Professional Attention

If you have a stand of trees, or individual specimens in your commercial grounds, chances are that they will need tree surgery attention at some point in their lives. Tree surgery on sizeable trees should only be tackled by a professional, so this article outlines what, when and why you need to call us in to help.

Trees are not just beautiful additions to our landscapes; they provide shade, improve air quality, and contribute to the overall well-being of our surroundings. However, like any living organism, trees can face health issues and structural concerns that require professional intervention. This is where the expertise of a tree surgeon comes into play. But how do you know when it's time to call for tree surgery? In this article, we'll explore the signs that indicate your trees need professional attention.


Is There Visible Decay and Deadwood On Your Trees?

Dead and decaying branches are not only unsightly but also pose a safety hazard to employees and visitors to your commercial property. Whilst at home in residential settings we can look at this risk with a much more laissez faire attitude where deadwood is likely to drop only within the boundaries of your own property. However, in a commercial grounds setting, more affirmative action needs to be taken.

If you notice branches with missing bark, cracks, or brittle wood, it's a sign that the tree might be suffering from internal decay. One of our qualified tree surgeons can assess the extent of the damage and determine if pruning or removal is necessary.


Is Your Tree Displaying Unusual Growth Patterns?

If you observe new growth that appears abnormal, such as excessive sprouting from the base of the tree or oddly shaped branches, it could be an indication of stress or disease. Some trees may have been too heavily pruned or pollarded previously, invoking accelerated grow back in the tree, or it may be that ground works nearby – for instance where construction work may have taken place – could’ve compromised the tree’s root systems, destabilising it.

We can take a site visit to take a good look at your trees and can then diagnose the underlying issue and recommend appropriate measures to restore the tree's health.


Taking Action On Fungal Growth and Cankers on Trees

The presence of mushrooms or other types of fungal growth at the base of the tree, on branches, or on the trunk can signify internal decay or disease. Cankers, which are areas of sunken or damaged bark, are also signs of a tree's compromised health. These symptoms should be addressed promptly to prevent further deterioration. In very large trees, the presence of cankers can indicate that they tree is already unstable and at risk of coming down in heavy storms. It goes without saying that the falling of a large tree can have a

professional tree surgery

How Do You Deal With Leaning or Unstable Trees?

There are many examples of weird and wonderful trees that have adapted to their environment with quirky leans or to adapt to harsh prevailing winds or rocky surfaces that the roots have clung onto for survival.  These images make great pictures of the beauty of nature, but can also pose a risk to people and property nearby in less wild situations. Trees that are leaning significantly or have a noticeable shift in their vertical alignment might be structurally compromised. This can result from factors like root issues, wind damage, or poor weight distribution. A tree surgeon can assess the stability of the tree and recommend corrective actions.


Insect Infestations That Destabilise Trees

Certain insects can wreak havoc on trees by burrowing into the wood, feeding on leaves, or transmitting diseases. If you observe signs of insect infestations, such as holes in the trunk, discoloured foliage, or visible pests, it's essential to have a professional determine the best course of action.

Some of the key insect infestations to look out for in the UK are from the following pests:

  • Bronze birch borers: a pest that is native to North America and a serious threat to our native birches in the UK.
  • Eight-toothed spruce bark beetle: a serious pest in forestry settings that needs to be controlled where found.
  • Elm zig-zag sawfly: another threat to the already depleted elm populations in the UK. This sawfly can defoliate whole trees.
  • Great Spruce bark beetle: accidentally introduced in 1982, this pest has now become established across the UK and damages tree by boring into the bark.
  • Horse chestnut leaf miner: the larvae of this pest leaves defoliated trees vulnerable.
  • Oak processionary moth: this moth strips oak trees of their leaves and is a health risk to humans, so should not be touched. A notifiable pest when found.
  • Red-necked longhorn beetle: the larvae burrow into the bark and cause low fruit yield and death of the tree in plums.


Looking out for disease symptoms on your trees

Trees can be susceptible to various diseases that manifest in different ways, such as yellowing leaves, premature leaf drop, or the presence of rust-coloured spots. A tree surgeon can identify the specific disease affecting your tree and provide appropriate treatment though this guide will probably help you to be vigilant and help with an early identification if you are worried about a tree on your property.


Removal of Hazardous Branches over Structures

If branches are growing over buildings, power lines, or other structures, they can pose a significant risk during storms or high winds. It is imperative that these branches are safely trimmed or removed to prevent potential damage to nearby property or accidental drop onto people or cars on your property when winter’s storms take hold.


Making Good on Wind/Storm or Construction Damage

Whilst most people can understand the devastation a strong storm can bring to a stand of trees, even the largest and most established looking trees, there are also other ways in which your trees might become damaged, needing corrective maintenance or restoration.

Construction activities can have unintended consequences for trees, including root damage, soil compaction, and structural stress. If your trees have been exposed to construction work, it's wise to consult a tree surgeon to assess their health and recommend rehabilitation measures if needed.

Similarly flooding and other natural extreme weathers can also produce a negative effect on trees, so when you suspect this, it’s time to call in the experts.


The well-being of your trees is crucial for maintaining a safe and visually pleasing environment. Regular observation and timely intervention can prevent small issues from turning into major problems. If you notice any of the signs mentioned above, it's a clear indication that your trees require professional attention from a qualified tree surgeon. By addressing issues promptly, you can ensure the longevity and vitality of your trees, contributing to the beauty and health of your outdoor space.


Contact Us

If you are a facilities manager, property or land owner looking for a tree surgeon or tree maintenance contractor, get in touch with us.

Telephone: (0114) 269 9119


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